pray

[prey]
verb (used with object)
1.
to offer devout petition, praise, thanks, etc., to (God or an object of worship).
2.
to offer (a prayer).
3.
to bring, put, etc., by praying: to pray a soul into heaven.
4.
to make earnest petition to (a person).
5.
to make petition or entreaty for; crave: She prayed his forgiveness.
6.
to offer devout petition, praise, thanks, etc., to God or to an object of worship.
7.
to enter into spiritual communion with God or an object of worship through prayer.
verb (used without object)
8.
to make entreaty or supplication, as to a person or for a thing.

Origin:
1250–1300; Middle English preien < Old French preierLatin precārī to beg, pray, derivative of prex (stem prec-) prayer; akin to Old English fricgan, Dutch vragen, German fragen, Gothic fraihnan to ask

prayingly, adverb
outpray, verb (used with object)
unpraying, adjective

pray, prayer, prey.


4. importune, entreat, supplicate, beg, beseech, implore.
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World English Dictionary
pray (preɪ)
 
vb (when intr, often foll by for; when tr, usually takes a clause as object)
1.  to utter prayers (to God or other object of worship): we prayed to God for the sick child
2.  (when tr, usually takes a clause as object or an infinitive) to make an earnest entreaty (to or for); beg or implore: she prayed to be allowed to go; leave, I pray you
3.  rare (tr) to accomplish or bring by praying: to pray a soul into the kingdom
 
interj
4.  archaic I beg you; please: pray, leave us alone
 
[C13: from Old French preier, from Latin precārī to implore, from prex an entreaty; related to Old English fricgan, Old High German frāgēn to ask, Old Norse fregna to enquire]

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

pray
late 13c., "ask earnestly, beg," also "pray to a god or saint," from O.Fr. preier (c.900), from L. precari "ask earnestly, beg," from *prex (plural preces, gen. precis) "prayer, request, entreaty," from PIE base *prek- "to ask, request, entreat" (cf. Skt. prasna-, Avestan frashna- "question;" O.C.S.
prositi, Lith. prasyti "to ask, beg;" O.H.G. frahen, Ger. fragen, O.E. fricgan "to ask" a question).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences for prays
The king prays before statues of his ancestors inside the hall.
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