pru·​ri·​ence | \ ˈpru̇r-ē-ən(t)s How to pronounce prurience (audio) \

Definition of prurience

: the quality or state of being prurient

Examples of prurience in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But perhaps to avoid any charges of prurience, Richard Greene lets a stream of prostitutes and lovers flow through the book as one-dimensional as shapes in a shooting gallery. Washington Post, "The dramatic — and embellished — life of Graham Greene," 15 Jan. 2021 This is a recurring problem for artists, from Vladimir Nabokov to Bernardo Bertolucci: How to explore the legitimate issue of prurience without being positively prurient, or at least unnecessarily prurient? Nr Editors, National Review, "The Week," 3 Sep. 2020 Grevenitis hopes that the photography, which has allowed her control over the prurience of outsiders, will perhaps provide her daughter with something similar. Eren Orbey, The New Yorker, "A Mother’s Steely Portraits of Her Daughter’s Life with Down Syndrome," 18 Aug. 2020 Misogyny, not prurience The Japanese press, by and large, is respectful of the boundaries set by the Imperial Household Agency. The Economist, "Japan’s emperor is a prisoner in his own palaces," 17 Oct. 2019 But there is more than prurience in their gaze, and in the movie’s. Justin Chang,, "‘Synonyms’ at Gene Siskel Film Center: When in France, do as the Israeli commandos-turned-nude Parisian models do," 5 Dec. 2019 Gawkers jostle for a viewing, journalists angle for takes; in the crowd, expressions of reverent fascination vie with cynical dismissals and racist prurience. The New York Review of Books, "Julian Lucas," 21 Feb. 2019 Stories about those who arrive on a therapist’s couch to complain about their love woes may appeal to our instincts for voyeurism, but Mr. Tallis never veers into prurience. Emily Bobrow, WSJ, "‘The Incurable Romantic’ Review: Truly, Madly, Deeply," 5 Oct. 2018 Months later people are still asking, and not out of mere prurience, what happened to Steven Murphy? Vicky Ward, Town & Country, "Buyer's Remorse: Inside the Art World's Billion-Dollar Rivalry," 4 Mar. 2015

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

1781, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of prurience was in 1781

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Statistics for prurience

Last Updated

22 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Prurience.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 8 Mar. 2021.

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