just 1 (jŭst)
1. Honorable and fair in one's dealings and actions: a just ruler. See Synonyms at fair1.
2. Consistent with what is morally right; righteous: a just cause.
3. Properly due or merited: just deserts.
4. Law Valid within the law; lawful: just claims.
5. Suitable or proper in nature; fitting: a just touch of solemnity.
6. Based on fact or sound reason; well-founded: a just appraisal.
adv. (jəst, jĭst; jŭst when stressed)Idioms:
1. Precisely; exactly: just enough salt.
2. Only a moment ago: He just arrived.
3. By a narrow margin; barely: just missed being hit; just caught the bus before it pulled away.
4. At a little distance: just down the road.
5. Merely; only: just a scratch.
6. Simply; certainly: It's just beautiful!
7. Perhaps; possibly: I just may go.
Almost; very nearly: This job is just about done.
Only a moment ago.
[Middle English juste, from Old French, from Latin iūstus; see yewes- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.