pray

verb
\ ˈprā How to pronounce pray (audio) \
prayed; praying; prays

Definition of pray

transitive verb

1 : entreat, implore often used as a function word in introducing a question, request, or plea pray be careful
2 : to get or bring by praying

intransitive verb

1 : to make a request in a humble manner
2 : to address God or a god with adoration, confession, supplication, or thanksgiving

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Examples of pray in a Sentence

There's little else to do now but hope and pray. The minister said, “Let us pray.” He prayed that they would have the strength to go on. He prayed that he would find a parking spot.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Unlike resort-goers who have private pools and butlers, guesthouse visitors meander through where Maldivians live and pray. Niharika Mandhana, WSJ, "Maldives, a Destination for the 1%, Chases the Backpacker Buck," 10 Feb. 2019 One officer, along with his K9, knelt down next to the boy and prayed with him. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, "Police officers and K9s join boy with tumor to pray before his brain surgery," 13 July 2018 The women who speak little Spanish but who hold hands across the tables in the visitor's room, praying. Dianna M. Náñez, azcentral, "Reunited or deported? Mother in ICE detention faces the inevitable," 12 July 2018 Let the best plan win, keep the fees down, avoid frivolous lawsuits and pray the California Coastal Commission doesn’t get involved. David Hansen, latimes.com, "Laguna Beach tries to map out its cultural mojo," 10 July 2018 Well, patriotic moderates of whatever (or no) party can only pray. Logan Jenkins, sandiegouniontribune.com, "For true moderates, New Yorker tops Dem dream ticket," 9 July 2018 Many family members have spent every day and night at the command center near the cave, praying for the boys to come out alive. New York Times, "In Daring Underwater Cave Rescue, 4 of 13 Thai Are Freed," 8 July 2018 Please pray that all relevant parties see reason soon. Allie Jones, The Cut, "Why Did Sofia Richie, 19, Take Scott Disick, 35, Back?," 6 June 2018 At the last minute, the Vatican added in a visit to the Ghetto, where Francis will pray quietly on the day when the names of Holocaust victims are read out at commemorations across the country. Nicole Winfield And Maria Grazia Murru, Fox News, "Pope begins Baltics pilgrimage as Russia threat looms large," 22 Sep. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pray.' 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 pray

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for pray

Middle English, from Anglo-French prier, praer, preier, from Latin precari, from prec-, prex request, prayer; akin to Old High German frāga question, frāgēn to ask, Sanskrit pṛcchati he asks

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Learn More about pray

Dictionary Entries near pray

-praxia

praxis

Praxiteles

pray

praya

prayer

prayer bead

Statistics for pray

Last Updated

7 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pray

The first known use of pray was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for pray

pray

verb

English Language Learners Definition of pray

: to speak to God especially in order to give thanks or to ask for something
: to hope or wish very much for something to happen
old-fashioned : to seriously ask (someone) to do something

pray

verb
\ ˈprā How to pronounce pray (audio) \
prayed; praying

Kids Definition of pray

1 : to speak to God especially to give thanks or ask for something
2 : to hope or wish very much for I prayed no one would forget.
3 : to ask earnestly : beg Do not leave, I pray you.

Legal Definition of pray

: to ask for plaintiff prays judgment against the defendants used especially in pleadings

intransitive verb

: to make a request of a court especially in a complaint or petition complainant prays for declaratory relief

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More from Merriam-Webster on pray

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pray

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pray

Spanish Central: Translation of pray

Nglish: Translation of pray for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pray for Arabic Speakers

Comments on pray

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