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

To almost everyone, their prim boundary-drawing seemed unnatural and incorrect in a context defined by its spontaneity, emotionality, and complicated relationship with taboo. Wired, "Concerning Consent, Chappelle, and Canceling Cancel Culture," 8 Sep. 2019 There’s something about plaid pants — collegiate yet cool, nerdy yet swaggering, prim yet slightly punky. Sharon Graubard, courant.com, "Fashion report: Cool classics for fall," 15 Aug. 2019 For all the prim and proper glamour at the annual Cannes Film Festival, there are always a few fashion and beauty wild cards. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "Marion Cotillard Breaks Red Carpet Beauty Rules With an Ab Reveal at Cannes," 22 May 2019 The usual patchwork of prim green fields is receding from the flanks of Pueblo Llano’s imposing, sunbathed mountains as farmers retreat closer to the only gas station in the hope of gaining an advantage. Anatoly Kurmanaev, New York Times, "A Fuel Shortage Is Crippling Agriculture in Venezuela," 6 July 2019 The designers chose a familiar image, showing an older Tubman in a black coat with a prim white collar, her graying hair pulled back in what might be plaits. Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker, "The Haunted Image of Harriet Tubman on the Twenty-Dollar Bill," 18 June 2019 Next to that, Mara sat, prim, her orange coat bunched in her lap. Emma Cline, The New Yorker, "Son of Friedman," 24 June 2019 Ivanka Trump, who is also an adviser to the president, chose a prim aesthetic for her stay in England. Washington Post, "Trump’s catastrophic fashion choices in England were not just a sign of bad taste," 6 June 2019 Get in an innocent dig The Queen, while prim, is not above making the occasional joke. Jackie Bischof, Quartz, "How to write a speech like a queen," 5 June 2019

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

origin unknown

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Dictionary Entries near prim

priggism

prill

prillion

prim

prima

prima ballerina

primacy

Statistics for prim

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for prim

The first known use of prim was in 1702

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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

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More from Merriam-Webster on prim

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with prim

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for prim

Spanish Central: Translation of prim

Nglish: Translation of prim for Spanish Speakers

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