1. Dangerously lacking in security or stability: a precarious posture; precarious footing on the ladder.
2. Subject to chance or unknown conditions: "His kingdom was still precarious; the Danes far from subdued" Christopher Brooke.
3. Based on uncertain, unwarranted, or unproved premises: a precarious solution to a difficult problem.
4. Archaic Dependent on the will or favor of another.
[From Latin precrius, obtained by entreaty, uncertain, from precr, to entreat; see pray.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition copyright ©2000 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Updated in 2003. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusLegend: Synonyms Related Words AntonymsAdj. 1. precarious - affording no ease or reassurance; "a precarious truce"
uneasy - lacking a sense of security or affording no ease or reassurance; "farmers were uneasy until rain finally came"; "uneasy about his health"; "gave an uneasy laugh"; "uneasy lies the head that wears the crown"; "an uneasy coalition government"; "an uneasy calm"; "an uneasy silence fell on the group"
2. precarious - fraught with danger; "dangerous waters"; "a parlous journey on stormy seas"; "a perilous voyage across the Atlantic in a small boat"; "the precarious life of an undersea diver"; "dangerous surgery followed by a touch-and-go recovery"
parlous, perilous, touch-and-go
dangerous, unsafe - involving or causing danger or risk; liable to hurt or harm; "a dangerous criminal"; "a dangerous bridge"; "unemployment reached dangerous proportions"
3. precarious - dangerously insecure; "a precarious footing on the ladder"
insecure - not firm or firmly fixed; likely to fail or give way; "the hinge is insecure"
4. precarious - not secure; beset with difficulties; "a shaky marriage"
unsafe, insecure - lacking in security or safety; "his fortune was increasingly insecure"; "an insecure future"
mark teetering-on-the-edge Bailey[/quote]