noun, plural peris.
one of a large group of beautiful, fairylike beings of Persian mythology, represented as descended from fallen angels and excluded from paradise until their penance is accomplished.
any lovely, graceful person.

1770–80; < Persian perī, variant of parī fairy, Middle Persian parīk, Avestan pairikā witch Unabridged


Jacopo [yah-kaw-paw] , 1561–1633, Italian composer.


a prefix meaning “about” or “around” (perimeter, periscope ), “enclosing” or “surrounding” (pericardium ), and “near” (perigee, perihelion ), appearing in loanwords from Greek (peripeteia ); on this model, used in the formation of compound words (perimorph ).

< Greek, prefixal use of perí (adv. and preposition) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
peri (ˈpɪərɪ)
n , pl -ris
1.  (in Persian folklore) one of a race of beautiful supernatural beings
2.  any beautiful fairy-like creature
[C18: from Persian: fairy, from Avestan pairikā witch]

1.  enclosing, encircling, or around: pericardium; pericarp; perigon
2.  near or adjacent: perihelion
[from Greek peri around, near, about]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

1777, from Pers. pari, from Avestan pairika. Race of superhuman female beings originally represented as malevolent, later as angelic genii (cf. sense evolution of Eng. fairy, to which it is not related).

prefix meaning "around, about, enclosing," from Gk. peri (prep.) "around, about, beyond," cognate with Skt. pari "around, about, through," L. per (see per).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

peri- pref.

  1. Around; about; enclosing: perimysium.

  2. Near: perinatal.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
A prefix that means: "around" (as in pericardium,) or "near" (as in perihelion).
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
  1. pericardial

  2. pericardium

Pharmaceutical Education and Research Institute
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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