Meaning of DISCRETION in English
di ‧ scre ‧ tion AC /dɪˈskreʃ ə n/ BrE AmE noun [uncountable]
1 . the ability and right to decide exactly what should be done in a particular situation
at sb’s discretion (=according to someone’s decision)
The awards are made at the discretion of the committee.
Promotions are left to the discretion of the supervisor.
discretion over/as to
People want to have more discretion over their working hours.
use/exercise your discretion
The judge exercised his discretion rightly to admit the evidence.
discretion to do something
The committee has the absolute discretion to refuse applications.
2 . the ability to deal with situations in a way that does not offend, upset, or embarrass people or tell any of their secrets ⇨ indiscretion :
British newspapers no longer feel they must treat the royal family with discretion.
3 . discretion is the better part of valour used to say that it is better to be careful than to take unnecessary risks
• • •
▪ care if you do something with care, you are careful to avoid damage, mistakes etc:
She put the needle in with great care.
Everyone should take care in the sun.
▪ caution care to avoid danger or risks, or care about trusting information that might not be true:
Her evidence should be treated with caution.
There was a certain lack of caution among investors.
▪ prudence a sensible and careful attitude that makes you avoid unnecessary risks - a rather formal use:
Banks should show more prudence in lending money.
▪ vigilance careful attention to what is happening, so that you will notice any danger or illegal activity:
Governments from across the world have called for greater vigilance against Internet-based crime.
There is a need for constant vigilance to protect vulnerable people.
▪ regard for something careful attention and consideration shown to something, to avoid danger or risks - used especially when someone fails to do this:
The court heard that the company had shown no regard for the safety of its employees.
These men are cold-blooded killers and have little regard for human life.
▪ tact care not to say anything that might offend or upset someone:
He handled the matter with a great deal of tact.
▪ discretion care to deal with situations in a way that does not embarrass, upset or offend people, especially by not telling any of their secrets:
Any confidential information was treated with discretion.
Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English. Longman - Словарь современного английского языка. 2012