follow Dictionary.com

Get the details behind our redesign

pray

[prey] /preɪ/
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
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
Related forms
prayingly, adverb
outpray, verb (used with object)
unpraying, adjective
Can be confused
pray, prayer, prey.
Synonyms
4. importune, entreat, supplicate, beg, beseech, implore.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
British Dictionary definitions for un praying

pray

/preɪ/
verb
1.
when intr, often foll by for; when tr, usually takes a clause as object. to utter prayers (to God or other object of worship) we prayed to God for the sick child
2.
(when transitive, 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.
(transitive) (rare) to accomplish or bring by praying to pray a soul into the kingdom
interjection
4.
(archaic) I beg you; please pray, leave us alone
Word Origin
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 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 un praying
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
Cite This Source

Word of The Day

Difficulty index for pray

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for un

2
4
Scrabble Words With Friends