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

1695–1705; < French prude a prude (noun), prudish (adj.), short for prudefemme, Old French prodefeme worthy or respectable woman. See proud, feme

prudelike, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
prude (pruːd)
a person who affects or shows an excessively modest, prim, or proper attitude, esp regarding sex
[C18: from French, from prudefemme, from Old French prode femme respectable woman; see proud]

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

1704, from Fr. prude "excessively prim or demure woman" (also an adj.), first recorded in Molière, from O.Fr. preude "good, virtuous, modest," perhaps an ellipsis of preudefemme "a discreet, modest woman," from O.Fr. prou de femme, fem. equivalent of prud-homme "a brave man" (see
proud). First record of prudish is from 1717. Prudery first recorded 1709.
"The peculiarity of prudery is to multiply sentinels, in proportion as the fortress is less threatened." [Victor Hugo]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
While he understands the medical stuff he learned in school pretty well, he is stuffy and a bit of a prude.
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