purfle

play
verb pur·fle \ ˈpər-fəl \

Definition of purfle

purfled; purfling play \-f(ə-)liŋ\
transitive verb
:to ornament the border or edges of

purfle

noun

purfle was our Word of the Day on 08/23/2014. Hear the podcast!

Did You Know?

Today we use "purfle" mostly in reference to setting a decorative inlaid border around the body of a guitar or violin, a process known as "purfling." In the past, "purfle" got the most use in connection with adornment of garments. "The Bishop of Ely . . . wore a robe of scarlet . . . purfled with minever," reported an English clergyman in 1840, for example. We embellished our language with "purfle," first as "purfilen" in the 1300s, when we took it with its meaning from Middle French porfiler.

Origin and Etymology of purfle

Middle English purfilen, from purfil embroidered border, from Anglo-French, from pur for, in place of (from Latin pro-) + fil thread, yarn — more at pro-, file


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