adverb by degrees, drop by drop, gradually, in installments, in small doses, in small quantities, inch by inch, little by little, partially associated concepts: piecemeal zoning

Burton's Legal Thesaurus. . 2006

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  • Piecemeal — Piece meal , adv. [OE. pecemele; pece a piece + AS. m?lum, dat. pl. of m?l part. See {Meal} a portion.] 1. In pieces; in parts or fragments. On which it piecemeal brake. Chapman. [1913 Webster] The beasts will tear thee piecemeal. Tennyson. [1913 …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Piecemeal — Piece meal , a. Made up of parts or pieces; single; separate. These piecemeal guilts. Gov. of Tongue. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Piecemeal — Piece meal , n. A fragment; a scrap. R. Vaughan. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • piecemeal — (adv.) c.1300, from PIECE (Cf. piece) (n.) + O.E. mælum at a time, dative plural of mæl appointed time, food served (see MEAL (Cf. meal) (n.1)). The second element once was more commonly used, e.g. O.E. styccemælum bit by bit, gearmælum …   Etymology dictionary

  • piecemeal — [adj/adv] bit by bit at intervals, by degrees, by fits and starts*, fitfully, fragmentary, gradual, gradually, intermittent, intermittently, interrupted, little by little*, partial, partially, patchy, spotty, step by step*; concepts 531,544 Ant.… …   New thesaurus

  • piecemeal — ► ADJECTIVE & ADVERB ▪ done piece by piece over a period of time. ORIGIN from PIECE(Cf. ↑piece) + an Old English word meaning «measure, quantity taken at one time» …   English terms dictionary

  • piecemeal — [pēs′mēl΄] adv. [ME pecemel < pece (see PIECE) + mele: see MEAL] 1. piece by piece; in small amounts or degrees 2. into pieces or parts adj. made or done in pieces or one piece at a time …   English World dictionary

  • Piecemeal — Superherobox| caption= New Mutants Annual #7 , The first appearance of Harness and Piecemeal character name=Piecemeal real name=Gilbert Benson publisher=Marvel Comics debut= New Mutants #7 creators=Fabian Nicieza Guang Yap species=Human Mutant… …   Wikipedia

  • piecemeal — [[t]pi͟ːsmiːl[/t]] ADJ GRADED: usu ADJ n (disapproval) If you describe a change or process as piecemeal, you disapprove of it because it happens gradually, usually at irregular intervals, and is probably not satisfactory. Instead of the… …   English dictionary

  • piecemeal — piece|meal [ˈpi:smi:l] adj [Date: 1200 1300; Origin: piece + meal by one part at a time (11 19 centuries) (from Old English mAlum)] a process that is piecemeal happens slowly and in stages that are not regular or planned properly ▪ The buildings… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

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