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 The turbo diesel that made its debut in the 2014 Audi A6 and A7 assumes its duty with a quiet, reassuring purr. Jens Meiners, Car and Driver, "2020 Volkswagen Amarok Still Impresses from Afar," 11 Nov. 2020 Cotton, the commodity that made America’s economic engine purr in the 19th century, was planted and picked by another commodity — an enslaved race — on land pilfered from Indigenous inhabitants. Otis R. Taylor Jr., SFChronicle.com, "Black construction workers in Bay Area say employers don’t stop abuse," 28 Sep. 2020 As the cat breathes, air touches the vibrating muscles, producing a purr. Iris Katz, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Pet Wise: The healing powers of a cat’s purr | COMMENTARY," 19 Sep. 2020 With the wag of a tail or the soothing sounds of a purr, a rescue pet comes into our lives and steals our hearts forever. Amanda Klarsfeld, sun-sentinel.com, "My Rescue Story: A retired nurse and her PetSmart pooch, Rags-Arthur," 6 Aug. 2020 G Pave Hawk or the purr of an HC-130J Hercules overhead. Jeff Bolton, Popular Mechanics, "'That Others May Live': The Pararescue Units Preparing for War on Top of the World," 19 July 2020 With her pulse-quickening visage, tantalizing purr of a voice, and willowy physique toned by boxing and judo, Ms. Blackman gained a foothold in British films in the late 1940s. Adam Bernstein, BostonGlobe.com, "Honor Blackman, actress who played a Bond woman in ‘Goldfinger,’ dies at 94," 7 Apr. 2020 Panama is sweet, attentive, and replies to affection with sincere and persistent bunts and purrs. Arizona Republic, azcentral, "Koko and more pets up for adoption in Phoenix-area shelters this week," 13 Mar. 2020 Snow leopards jump 50 feet in one pounce, have massively bushy tails and purr but don’t roar. Washington Post, "How a lifelong obsession with snow leopards led me to northern India," 10 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Foreign investors and other business folk, Mr Xie purred, had no reason to panic. The Economist, "Rule by fear China’s national-security bill for Hong Kong is an attempt to terrify," 28 May 2020 Purr long, purr short, and kind of work them together. Matthew Every, Outdoor Life, "How to Tag a Tom in These 4 Tough Turkey Hunting Scenarios," 1 May 2020 More than 500 cars, trucks and other things that go vroom (or purr, in the case of the electric cars) will be on display, including Ford's new all-electric Mustang Mach-E, along with classic cars, special events and stuff for kids to do. Chris Foran, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "6 things you should be doing in Milwaukee this weekend, from a Snow Day in Black Cat Alley to the auto show," 19 Feb. 2020 No matter what the weather is, the last weekend of this month promises to be purr-fect. John Delapp, Houston Chronicle, "Cats of all categories coming to Deer Park," 3 Jan. 2020 The gathering storm: In one of the world’s most unequal societies, a fashion designer's sewing machine purrs. Babak Tafreshi, National Geographic, "Trespassing, vandalism rise in U.S. national parks," 14 Apr. 2020 The universe has cooked up all sorts of bizarre and beautiful forms of matter, from blazing stars to purring cats, out of just three basic ingredients. Quanta Magazine, "Why Do Matter Particles Come in Threes? A Physics Titan Weighs In," 30 Mar. 2020 Physics undergrads at the University of Leicester have made a growth equation for the Star Trek universe’s infamous troubling tribbles—purring balls of fluff that rapidly multiplied aboard the USS Enterprise in a classic 1967 episode. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "Geniuses Determine How Long It Would Take for Star Trek's Tribbles to Completely Fill the Enterprise," 25 Feb. 2020 But tourists around Milan found a city that seemed to be less than purring. Jason Horowitz, New York Times, "Coronavirus Stalls Milan, Italy’s Economic Engine," 24 Feb. 2020

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

22 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Purr.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/purr. Accessed 28 Nov. 2020.

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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

More from Merriam-Webster on purr

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for purr

Nglish: Translation of purr for Spanish Speakers

Comments on purr

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