Use the noun prudence to describe sensible decisions about everyday life, like the prudence of people who spend their money wisely, saving as much as they can.

Prudence can also describe the skill of side-stepping trouble or embarrassment, like having the prudence to avoid risks or the prudence to prepare for the unexpected, like packing a change of clothes in case the weather changes or your dinner reservations turn out to be at a fancy restaurant. Prudence comes from the Latin word prudentia, which means "foresight, sagacity."

Definitions of prudence

n discretion in practical affairs

a lack of caution in practical affairs
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the prudence and care exercised by someone in the management of resources
frugality, frugalness
prudence in avoiding waste
foresight, foresightedness, foresightfulness
providence by virtue of planning prudently for the future
parsimoniousness, parsimony, penny-pinching, thrift
extreme care in spending money; reluctance to spend money unnecessarily
economy, thriftiness
frugality in the expenditure of money or resources
Type of:
natural virtue
(scholasticism) one of the four virtues (prudence, justice, fortitude, and temperance) derived from nature
discernment, discretion
the trait of judging wisely and objectively

n knowing how to avoid embarrassment or distress

circumspection, discreetness, discretion
discretion in keeping secret information
Type of:
discernment, judgement, judgment, sagaciousness, sagacity
the mental ability to understand and discriminate between relations

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