purr

noun
\ ˈpər How to pronounce purr (audio) \

Definition of purr

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a low vibratory murmur typical of an apparently contented or pleased cat

purr

verb
purred; purring; purrs

Definition of purr (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to make a purr or a sound like a purr cars purring along the highway
2a : to speak in a manner that resembles a purr
b : to speak in a malicious catty manner

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Other Words from purr

Verb

purringly \ ˈpər-​iŋ-​lē How to pronounce purringly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms for purr

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of purr in a Sentence

Noun the soft purr of a car engine listened to the reassuring purr of the car engine Verb The cat was purring contentedly in my lap. The cars were purring along the highway. “You look tense. Let me buy you a drink,” he purred.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Paul International Airport has a new member whose job is purr-fect for calming stress. Deanna Weniger, Twin Cities, "Meet ‘Stitches’: MSP airport has a comfort cat now," 9 Nov. 2019 Hit the red ignition button and the engine fires with a deep growl and then settles into a rumbling purr. San Diego Union-Tribune, "550-hp Jaguar F-Pace SVR: all claws, fangs and growl in a velvet coat," 15 Sep. 2019 Even little things like hugging a dog or hearing a cat purr can make a big difference for someone who needs to experience the unconditional love of pets. Texas A&m University, Houston Chronicle, "PET TALK: Enjoying the magic of pet therapy," 1 Aug. 2019 Keaton looked extraordinarily cool tooling around in his Batmobile and tackling (but never getting overshadowed by) Jack Nicholson’s kooky Joker and Michelle Pfeiffer's purr-fect Catwoman. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, "'Batman' turns 30: All of the big-screen Batmen, definitively ranked," 23 June 2019 Yes, this is all hiss-terical, but Yousafzai’s party may have just come up with the purr-fect solution to better attract young people to politics: use filters when streaming events live on Facebook. Alex Ward, Vox, "Cat-astrophe: Pakistani politician’s event streamed on Facebook with cat filter on," 17 June 2019 But in the sublime, time-stopping Poco adagio, the gentle purr of the organ beneath the orchestra sounds one-dimensional. Barbara Jepson, WSJ, "Uncertain Tempo," 31 Dec. 2018 Here's hoping that this special friend finds the purr-fect family. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Facebook Has Fallen in Love With Bruno the “High Maintenance" Cat," 17 Aug. 2018 The no-fuss look comes together with just a few black pieces, cat ears, and cat makeup, making it a purr-fect last-minute costume for kids or adults. Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "How to Make a Purr-fect Cat Costume for Halloween," 1 Aug. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb There’s no significant musical dialogue between Sheeran’s aspirant soft-pop mewls and Young Thug’s yelps, or Cardi B’s rasps, or Ella Mai’s purrs. Chris Richards, Washington Post, "This new Ed Sheeran album sounds like a hostage situation," 16 July 2019 His style and approach are most definitely Brazilian, and the addition of a winger in that mould could get supporters purring. SI.com, "Arsenal Targets: Comparing the Gunners' Rumoured Forward Options This Summer," 7 July 2019 But Chidi doesn’t let her limitations hold her back, according to Mikkola, who said the cat runs, plays, climbs, purrs and cuddles. Kathleen Christiansen, orlandosentinel.com, "Featured Pet: Chidi from Candy’s Cats," 27 Aug. 2019 First, capture a video of your sleepy kitten purring, or snap a shot of your crazy cat doing aerial stunts. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "36 Best Cat Instagram Captions for Every Photo of Your Feline Friend," 19 July 2019 Then there’s just that light purring-kitten sound, when the machine gets activated, that’s very sensory. Rachel King, Fortune, "Queer Eye’s Antoni Porowski on Netflix, Social Media, and Opening a Restaurant," 30 June 2019 Kitties can easily reduce your levels of stress—especially for women above 50 years old—and the comforting rhythmic sound of their purring actually has healing powers. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "According to Research, Being a Cat Lady is Actually Good For You," 15 May 2019 The whole soft sofa to himself, a glass of whisky in his hand, the television purring sights that held his attention, kung fu, football, sumo wrestling, Prince Naseem thrashing someone. Leila Aboulela, Harper's magazine, "Whisky Lullaby," 10 Jan. 2019 For most of that first day home, his cat sat in his lap, purring and looking up at him in total adoration. Lindsey Vehlewald, SELF, "We Never Got Flu Shots. Then the Flu Almost Killed My Husband," 9 Nov. 2018

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

Noun

circa 1616, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1620, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for purr

Noun

imitative

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Time Traveler for purr

Time Traveler

The first known use of purr was circa 1616

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Statistics for purr

Last Updated

15 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Purr.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/purring. Accessed 22 November 2019.

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More Definitions for purr

purr

noun
How to pronounce purr (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of purr

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the low, soft sound that a cat makes when it is happy
: a sound that is like the purr of a cat

purr

verb

English Language Learners Definition of purr (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make a purr or a sound like a purr
: to say (something) in a soft, low voice especially when you are pleased or trying to persuade someone to do something

purr

verb
\ ˈpər How to pronounce purr (audio) \
purred; purring

Kids Definition of purr

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make the low murmuring sound of a contented cat or a similar sound

purr

noun

Kids Definition of purr (Entry 2 of 2)

: the low murmuring sound of a contented cat or a similar sound the purr of the engine

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More from Merriam-Webster on purr

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for purr

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with purr

Spanish Central: Translation of purr

Nglish: Translation of purr for Spanish Speakers

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