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prudery

[proo-duh-ree] /ˈpru də ri/
noun, plural pruderies for 2.
1.
excessive propriety or modesty in speech, conduct, etc.
2.
pruderies, prudish actions, phrases, or words.
Origin
1700-1710
1700-10; < French pruderie. See prude, -ery
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for prudery
  • That's our new conventional wisdom about an age of proverbial prudery.
  • There j is far too much new- fashioned prudery among mothers.
Word Origin and History for prudery
n.

1709, from prude + -ery and in part from French pruderie.

The peculiarity of prudery is to multiply sentinels, in proportion as the fortress is less threatened. [Victor Hugo, "Les Misérables"]
Some 20c. writers in English used extended form prudibundery, in many cases likely for contemptuous emphasis, from French prudibonderie "prudery."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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