prim

verb
\ ˈprim How to pronounce prim (audio) \
primmed; primming

Definition of prim

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to give a prim or demure expression to primming her thin lips after every mouthful— John Buchan
2 : to dress primly

prim

adjective
primmer; primmest

Definition of prim (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : stiffly formal and proper : decorous
b : prudish
2 : neat, trim prim hedges

Definition of prim (Entry 3 of 3)

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Other Words from prim

Adjective

primly adverb
primness noun

Examples of prim in a Sentence

Adjective He has prim views on religion. Her aunts were very prim and proper.
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Schweer, dressed for the office, had a prim, businesslike manner. Rachel Aviv, The New Yorker, 19 July 2021 Right now, Mark Cross is offering up his prim Grace Box Bag in a wicker version, while Jacquemus is doing just the same with his Le Chiquito. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, 2 July 2021 Pairing him with a very prim and proper heroine who has this really immaculate reputation, it's been a really fun contrast to write. Maureen Lee Lenker, EW.com, 9 July 2021 Dior took an everyday, slightly equestrian approach while Chanel maintained its girlish and prim aesthetic with skirt suits and softly cut jackets. Kristen Bateman, Town & Country, 7 July 2021 The Ville is one labyrinth that David must navigate; the other is Galvin Magnet Middle School, a prim school for gifted students. The New Yorker, 5 July 2021 Founded in 1977 as a store where men could feel comfortable shopping for lingerie, even the name referred to male fantasies of prim Victorian ladies who became naughty in the boudoir. New York Times, 16 June 2021 Know that those imperfect foods are equally nutritious to the prim counterparts and support stores with ambitious sustainability initiatives. Danielle Bernabe, Fortune, 7 June 2021 The front looks like a spider’s web, rendered in white and black yarn, with a circular pattern that reaches up the neck, almost giving the impression of a prim, high collar. Sarah Spellings, Vogue, 18 May 2021

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

Verb

1707, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1702, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for prim

Verb

earlier as intransitive verb, "to assume a formal or demure air," of obscure origin

Note: First attested in the comedies of Thomas d'urfey, as Fool's Preferment (1688) and The Marriage-Hater Match'd (1692). Akin in sense to primp, attested earlier, though the verb as well as the adjective primp "(of the mouth) pursed, primly set" are nearly exclusive to Scots and American English.

Adjective

derivative of or akin to prim entry 1

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Dictionary Entries Near prim

prillion

prim

prima

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Statistics for prim

Cite this Entry

“Prim.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/prim. Accessed 4 Aug. 2021.

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More Definitions for prim

prim

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of prim

: very formal and proper
: easily shocked or upset by rude behavior, comments, etc.
: very neat in appearance

prim

adjective
\ ˈprim How to pronounce prim (audio) \
primmer; primmest

Kids Definition of prim

: very formal and proper

Other Words from prim

primly adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on prim

Nglish: Translation of prim for Spanish Speakers

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