1 of 2

noun (1)

: thief


2 of 2

noun (2)

archaic : fop
archaic : fellow, person
: one who offends or irritates by observance of proprieties (as of speech or manners) in a pointed manner or to an obnoxious degree
priggery noun
priggish adjective
priggishly adverb
priggishness noun

Examples of prig in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Even girls, against the advice of monks and prigs, were taught to read and write. Claudia Roth Pierpont, The New Yorker, 19 Feb. 2024 Star Wars: Return of The Jedi 40th Anniversary, Darth Vader, $10.39 (prig. Rachel Simon,, 28 Aug. 2023 Yet, sadly, this kind of glorious sandwich has become a very rare thing in America, and one need not be a New York prig to contend that outside of New York, good Jewish deli—which is a tautology—is nearly impossible to find, with the exception of one or two places in Los Angeles. John Mariani, Forbes, 27 Oct. 2021 The 21st century has been a boon to young abstainers who reject the word alcoholic, and to anyone who wants to quit drinking without becoming a sad sack or a prig. Virginia Heffernan, Wired, 19 Apr. 2022 Not only would this person likely be perceived as a prig, but their reasoning is unlikely to succeed on Wikipedia. Stephen Harrison, Wired, 15 Jan. 2021

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'prig.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Noun (1)

prig to steal

Noun (2)

probably from prig entry 1

First Known Use

Noun (1)

1567, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

1676, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of prig was in 1567

Dictionary Entries Near prig

Cite this Entry

“Prig.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


: a person who annoys others by being too careful about conforming to what is socially acceptable (as in speech and manners)
priggishly adverb
priggishness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on prig

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!