What word or phrase does your mother always say?


[proo r-ee-uh nt] /ˈprʊər i ənt/
having, inclined to have, or characterized by lascivious or lustful thoughts, desires, etc.
causing lasciviousness or lust.
having a restless desire or longing.
Origin of prurient
1630-40; < Latin prūrient- (stem of prūriēns), present participle of prūrīre to itch
Related forms
prurience, pruriency, noun
pruriently, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for prurient
  • Not every interest in illicit relationships is prurient.
  • Its is you who with the prurient interest in this scandal not me.
  • For that misconception a prurient censor board is to be blamed.
  • The way people respond to tragedy has a prurient interest for outsiders, but art transcends mere fascination.
  • The legislature finds that many individuals have been involuntarily exposed to products of a prurient nature while shopping.
  • Violence never should be depicted so as to appeal to the prurient interests of the audience.
British Dictionary definitions for prurient


unusually or morbidly interested in sexual thoughts or practices
exciting or encouraging lustfulness; erotic
Derived Forms
prurience, noun
pruriently, adverb
Word Origin
C17: from Latin prūrīre to itch, to lust after
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for prurient

1630s, "itching," later, and now exclusively, "having an itching desire" (1650s), especially "lascivious, lewd," (1746), from Latin prurientem (nominative pruriens), present participle of prurire "to itch; to long for, be wanton," perhaps related to pruna "glowing coals," from PIE root *preus- "to freeze; burn" (see freeze (v.)). Related: Pruriently.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for prurient

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for prurient

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with prurient

Nearby words for prurient