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prie

[pree] /pri/
noun, verb (used with object), Scot. and North England
1.
pree.

pry1

[prahy] /praɪ/
verb (used without object), pried, prying.
1.
to inquire impertinently or unnecessarily into something:
to pry into the personal affairs of others.
2.
to look closely or curiously; peer; peep.
noun, plural pries.
3.
an impertinently inquisitive person.
4.
an act of prying.
Origin of pry1
1275-1325
1275-1325; Middle English pryen, prien < ?

pry2

[prahy] /praɪ/
verb (used with object), pried, prying.
1.
to move, raise, or open by leverage.
2.
to get, separate, or ferret out with difficulty:
to pry a secret out of someone; We finally pried them away from the TV.
noun, plural pries.
3.
a tool, as a crowbar, for raising, moving, or opening something by leverage.
4.
the leverage exerted.
Origin
1800-10; back formation from prize3, taken as a plural noun or 3rd person singular verb

pree

or prie

[pree] /pri/ Scot. and North England
noun
1.
a test, trial, or taste; a test by sampling.
verb (used with object), preed, preeing.
2.
to try, test, or taste.
Idioms
3.
pree the mouth of, Scot. to kiss.
Origin
1690-1700; shortened form of preive, Middle English preve (noun), preven (v.) < Old French pr(o)eve, preuver; see prove
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for pries
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It pries down deep into men's lives and uncovers their secret motives.

    The Call of the World W. E. Doughty
  • He discovers a wart, he pries into a pore; and he calls it knowledge of man.

    Imaginary Conversations and Poems Walter Savage Landor
  • pries' she don' make us more lov' each other—pries' don' make us happy—we like birds that make nes' in tree-tops.

  • Some people, when they get an idea, it pries the structure apart.

  • He tiptoes back to the gate, pries off one of the ear muffs, and leans over real confidential.

    Torchy Sewell Ford
  • He walks about as it were a public place, and he pries everywhere.

    Talks To Farmers Charles Haddon Spurgeon
  • It is pure luck which pries open most doors of life, and it was upon luck alone I must rely now.

    My Lady of the North Randall Parrish
  • He who pries into letters for one purpose, may be led to pry into them for another.

  • pries, although enjoying a high reputation in the city, had long been in a bad way.

British Dictionary definitions for pries

pry1

/praɪ/
verb pries, prying, pried
1.
(intransitive) often foll by into. to make an impertinent or uninvited inquiry (about a private matter, topic, etc)
noun (pl) pries
2.
the act of prying
3.
a person who pries
Word Origin
C14: of unknown origin

pry2

/praɪ/
verb pries, prying, pried
1.
to force open by levering
2.
(US & Canadian) to extract or obtain with difficulty: they had to pry the news out of him
Equivalent term (in Britain and other countries) prise
Word Origin
C14: of unknown origin
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 pries

pry

v.

"look inquisitively," c.1300, from prien "to peer in," of unknown origin, perhaps related to late Old English bepriwan "to wink." Related: Pried; prying. As a noun, "act of prying," from 1750; meaning "inquisitive person" is from 1845.

"raise by force," 1823, from a noun meaning "instrument for prying, crowbar;" alteration of prize (as though it were a plural) in obsolete sense of "lever" (c.1300), from Old French prise "a taking hold, grasp" (see prize (n.2)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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7
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