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[pahr-boil] /ˈpɑrˌbɔɪl/
verb (used with object)
to boil partially or for a short time; precook.
Origin of parboil
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English parboylen to boil partly, (rarely) to boil fully < Middle French parboillir < Late Latin perbullīre to boil through and through (see per-, boil1); change of meaning by confusion of par- with part Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for parboil


verb (transitive)
to boil until partially cooked, often before further cooking
to subject to uncomfortable heat
Word Origin
C15: from Old French parboillir, from Late Latin perbullīre to boil thoroughly (see per-, boil1); modern meaning due to confusion of par- with part
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for parboil

late 14c., "to boil partially;" mid-15c., "to boil thoroughly," from Old French parboillir "to boil thoroughly," from Medieval Latin perbullire "to boil thoroughly," from Latin per "through, thoroughly" + bullire "to boil" (see boil (v.)). Main modern meaning "boil partially" is by mistaken association of the prefix with part. Related: Parboiled; parboiling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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