Learn English – word to describe “being formal for the sake of being formal”


I was recently chastised at work for using the word "cool" in an email chain–an act that I attribute to being overly-formal for no other reason than to uphold an unnecessarily perceived "law" of formality. Is there an English word that would better describe this?

Best Answer

The apt words are


a person who displays or demands of others pointlessly precise conformity, fussiness about trivialities, or exaggerated propriety, especially in a self-righteous or irritating manner.


a person who is excessively proper or modest in speech, conduct, dress, etc.


a person who overemphasizes rules or minor details.

a person who adheres rigidly to book knowledge without regard to common sense.