peruse

verb
pe·​ruse | \ pə-ˈrüz How to pronounce peruse (audio) \
perused; perusing

Definition of peruse

transitive verb

1a : to examine or consider with attention and in detail : study
b : to look over or through in a casual or cursory manner
2 : read especially : to read over in an attentive or leisurely manner

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Other Words from peruse

perusal \ pə-​ˈrü-​zəl How to pronounce perusal (audio) \ noun
peruser noun

Synonyms for peruse

Synonyms

pore (over), read

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Did You Know?

Peruse has long been a literary word, used by such famous authors as Shakespeare, Tennyson, and Thomas Hardy, and it tends to have a literary flavor even in our time. Peruse can suggest paying close attention to something, but it can also simply mean "to read." The "read" sense, which is not especially new and was in fact included in Samuel Johnson's 1755 dictionary, has drawn some criticism over the years for being too broad. Some commentators have recommended that peruse be reserved for reading with great care and attention to detail. But the fact remains that peruse is often used in situations where a simple "read" definition could be easily substituted. It may suggest either an attentive read or a quick scan.

Examples of peruse in a Sentence

To refresh my memory of the old days, I asked for some Dailies of the thirties from the morgue, sat down at the large round oak table at the end of the editorial room on the second floor, and began riffling through the musty pages. Soon a burly middle-aged man appeared and seated himself at the table to peruse some recent issues of the paper and take notes. — Arthur Miller, Timebends, 1987 I've even found myself idly perusing the Yellow Pages, not frantic for a plumber, just browsing. — Lesley Conger, Writer, October 1968 Bessie asked if I would have a book …  , and I begged her to fetch Gulliver's Travels from the library. This book I had again and again perused with delight. — Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre, 1847 He perused the newspaper over breakfast. perused the manuscript, checking for grammatical errors
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Recent Examples on the Web

Beyond the daytime perusing, there are parties, dinner events, and, of course, the Miami nightlife. Stephanie Cain, Fortune, "Why Champagne Brands Are Partnering With Art Fairs," 29 June 2019 Shortly after perusing the manuscript, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee volunteered his services. cleveland.com, "Author discusses Kent’s contribution to rock history at Brecksville Library," 13 June 2019 As things stand, 11 Conservatives have declared and represent positions varying from actively perusing a no deal and banishing all pro-EU Conservatives from the Cabinet to holding a second Brexit referendum. Luke Mcgee, CNN, "Theresa May's days are ending but the Brexit fantasy lives on," 7 June 2019 And don’t leave without perusing the drinks list at Curio. Todd Plummer, Vogue, "Denver’s Coolest Bars, Restaurants, and Shops Are All in This One Neighborhood," 6 Nov. 2018 The Phillies manager, with his iPad opened on his desk, perused a list of players who had reached base safely in as many consecutive games as Odubel Herrera’s streak of 45. Matt Breen, Philly.com, "Odubel Herrera's 45-game on-base streak ends as Phillies fall to Cardinals," 20 May 2018 There's more on top of that, too, so make sure to peruse the whole list below. Ars Staff, Ars Technica, "Dealmaster: Save $165 on a Dell desktop with a GTX 1080 and 512GB SSD," 6 Feb. 2018 Here are the aisles to peruse (and bypass) at your favorite dollar store. Laura Daily, Washington Post, "What to buy (and not to buy) at the dollar store," 23 July 2019 Those searching for accommodations around the venue can peruse the lodgings at stay22.com/events. Darla Guillen Gilthorpe, Houston Chronicle, "Freaky Deaky Texas 2019 tickets now on sale; headliners: Martin Garrix, Steve Aoki, Armin Van Buuren," 10 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'peruse.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of peruse

circa 1520, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for peruse

Middle English, to use up, deal with in sequence, from Latin per- thoroughly + Middle English usen to use

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Statistics for peruse

Last Updated

16 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for peruse

The first known use of peruse was circa 1520

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More Definitions for peruse

peruse

verb

English Language Learners Definition of peruse

formal
: to look at or read (something) in an informal or relaxed way
: to examine or read (something) in a very careful way

peruse

verb
pe·​ruse | \ pə-ˈrüz How to pronounce peruse (audio) \
perused; perusing

Kids Definition of peruse

2 : to read through carefully

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More from Merriam-Webster on peruse

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Spanish Central: Translation of peruse

Nglish: Translation of peruse for Spanish Speakers

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