formal

formal
adjective
1)

a formal dinner

Syn:
ceremonial, ceremonious, ritualistic, ritual, conventional, traditional; stately, courtly, solemn, dignified; elaborate, ornate, dressy; black-tie
Ant:
informal
2)

a very formal manner

Syn:
aloof, reserved, remote, detached, unapproachable; stiff, prim, stuffy, staid, ceremonious, correct, proper, decorous, conventional, precise, exact, punctilious, unbending, inflexible, straitlaced; informal buttoned-down, standoffish
Ant:
informal, casual
3)

a formal garden

Syn:
symmetrical, regular, orderly, arranged, methodical, systematic
Ant:
informal
4)

formal permission

Syn:
official, legal, authorized, approved, validated, certified, endorsed, documented, sanctioned, licensed, recognized, authoritative
Ant:
informal, unofficial
5)

formal education

Syn:
conventional, mainstream; school, institutional
Ant:
informal
••
formal, ceremonial, ceremonious, pompous, proper, punctilious
Formal suggests a suit-and-tie approach to certain situations — reserved, conventional, obeying all the rules (an engraved invitation to a formal dinner requiring black tie or evening gown). Proper, in this regard, implies scrupulously correct behavior that observes rules of etiquette (the proper way to serve a guest; the proper spoon for dessert). Punctilious behavior observes all the proper formalities (a "punctilio" is a detail or fine point), but may verge on the annoying (her punctilious attention to the correct placement of silverware made setting the table an ordeal). Someone (usually a man) who likes to show off just how formal and proper he can be runs the risk of becoming the most dreaded dinner guest of all: the pompous ass. Pompous individuals may derive more than the normal amount of pleasure from participating in ceremonial acts or events, which are those performed according to set rules, but ceremonious suggests a less negative and more ritualized approach to formality (the Japanese woman could not have been more ceremonious than when she was carrying out the ceremonial serving of tea).

Thesaurus of popular words. 2014.

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  • Formal — Form al (f[^o]rm al), a. [L. formalis: cf. F. formel.] 1. Belonging to the form, shape, frame, external appearance, or organization of a thing. [1913 Webster] 2. Belonging to the constitution of a thing, as distinguished from the matter composing …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • formal — for‧mal [ˈfɔːml ǁ ˈfɔːr ] adjective done or given officially and publicly: • The companies said they expect to sign a formal agreement before year s end. • No formal announcement has yet been made. • The British authorities have decided to… …   Financial and business terms

  • formal — adjetivo 1. De la forma: requisito formal, análisis formal. 2. Que cumple con su palabra, obligaciones o compromisos: Es un hombre formal, de palabra, puedes confiar en él. Es un muchacho formal, serio y responsable. Es una empresa formal, no… …   Diccionario Salamanca de la Lengua Española

  • formal — for·mal adj 1: relating to or involving outward form, structure, or arrangement rather than content a formal defect in the pleadings 2: requiring special or established solemnities or formalities esp. in order to be effective or valid under the… …   Law dictionary

  • formal — FORMÁL, Ă, formali, e, adj. 1. Privitor la formă, care ţine de formă, de aparenţă. ♦ (Adverbial) în aparenţă. 2. Formulat precis; categoric, expres. 3. Pătruns de formalism; făcut de formă (7). 4. (Despre unele acte juridice) Care necesită… …   Dicționar Român

  • formal — [fôr′məl] adj. [ME < L formalis < forma, FORM] 1. of external form or structure, rather than nature or content 2. of the internal form; relating to the intrinsic or essential character or nature 3. of or according to prescribed or fixed… …   English World dictionary

  • formal — (Del lat. formālis). 1. adj. Perteneciente o relativo a la forma, por contraposición a esencial. 2. Que tiene formalidad. 3. Dicho de una persona: Seria, amiga de la verdad y enemiga de chanzas. 4. Expreso, preciso, determinado. ☛ V. acto formal …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • formal — (adj.) late 14c., from O.Fr. formel (13c.) and directly from L. formalis, from forma (see FORM (Cf. form)). As a noun, c.1600 (pl.) things that are formal; as a short way to say formal dance, recorded by 1906, U.S. college students …   Etymology dictionary

  • formal — Adj std. (16. Jh.) Entlehnung. Entlehnt aus l. fōrmālis, zu l. fōrma Form . Aus der gleichen Grundlage über das Französische formell. Eine Substantivierung in Formalie, Abstrakta in Formalismus, Formalität; Täterbezeichnung: Formalist; Verb:… …   Etymologisches Wörterbuch der deutschen sprache

  • formal — [adj1] established, orderly academic, approved, ceremonial, ceremonialistic, ceremonious, confirmed, conventional, decorous, directed, explicit, express, fixed, formalistic, lawful, legal, methodical, official, precise, prescribed, pro forma,… …   New thesaurus

  • formal — Adj. (Mittelstufe) die äußere Form betreffend Beispiele: Wir hatten viele formale Probleme zu bewältigen. Das Referat ist formal einwandfrei …   Extremes Deutsch

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