elementary - definition and synonyms

 
adjective 

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/ˌelɪˈment(ə)ri/
  1. 1
    relating to the most basic and important part of something

    They clearly failed to take even the most elementary precautions.

    1. a.
      relating to the first and most basic things that you learn about a subject

      a course in elementary German

      elementary reading skills

Word story
This phrase is thought to have been said by the detective Sherlock Holmes to his friend Dr Watson in the stories of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859–1930), but in fact the character never says this in any of the stories.