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Ostentatious display of dress. – More.


Setting off or adorning for display.


Full of pranks.

PRASE, n. [s as z.]

A silicious mineral; a subspecies of quartz of a leek green color. – Cleaveland.

PRA'SON, n. [pra'sn; Gr. πρασον.]

A leek; also, a sea weed green as a leek. – Bailey.


Continued talk to little purpose; trifling talk; unmeaning loquacity. – Shak. Denham.

PRATE, v.i. [D. praaten, to prate; Sw. prata, to tattle; Gr. φραδαω. Qu. allied perhaps to Sax. ræd, speech.]

To talk much and without weight, or to little purpose; to be loquacious; as the vulgar express it, to run on. To prate and talk for life and honor. – Shak. And make a fool presume to prate of love. – Dryden.

PRATE, v.t.

To utter foolishly. What nonsense would the fool, thy master, prate, / When thou, his knave, canst talk at such a rate? – Dryden.


One that talks much to little purpose, or on trifling subjects. – Southern.

PRAT'IC, or PRAT-IQUE', n. [It. pratica; Sp. practica; Fr. pratique. See Practice.]

In commerce, primarily, converse; intercourse; the communication between a ship and the port in which she arrives. Hence, a license or permission to hold intercourse and trade with the inhabitants of a place, after having performed quarantine, or upon a certificate that the ship did not come from an infected place; a term used particularly in the South of Europe, where vessels coming from countries infected with contagious diseases, are subjected to quarantine.

PRAT'ING, ppr.

Talking much on a trifling subject; talking idly.


With much idle talk; with loquacity.


Trifling talk; loquacity on trivial subjects. Mere prattle without practice, / Is all his soldiership. – Shak.

PRAT'TLE, v.i. [dim. of prate.]

To talk much and idly to be loquacious on trifling subjects. – Locke. Addison. This word is particularly applied to the talk of children.


Prattle. – Hayley.


An idle talker. – Herbert.


Talking much on trivial affairs.

PRAV'I-TY, n. [L. pravitas, from pravus, crooked, evil.]

Deviation from right; moral perversion; want of rectitude; corrupt state; as, the pravity of human nature; the pravity of the will. – Milton. South.


A small crustaceous animal of the Linnean genus Cancer, with a serrated snout bending upward. – Encyc.

PRAX'IS, n. [L. from the Gr. See Practice.]

  1. Use; practice. – Coventry.
  2. An example or form to teach practice. – Lowth.

PRAY, v.i. [Fr. prier; It. pregare; L. precor; Russ. prochu; allied perhaps to the Sax. frægnan, G. fragen, D. vraagen, Sw. fråga, to ask, L. proco. This word belongs to the same family as preach and reproach, Heb. Ch. Syr. Eth. and Ar. ברד, to bless, to reproach; rendered in Job ii. 9, to curse; properly, to reproach, to rail at or upbraid, W. rhegu. The primary sense is to throw, to pour forth sounds or words; for the same word in Arabic, بَرَكَ baraka, signifies to pour out water, as in violent rain, Gr. βρεχω. See Rain. As the oriental word signifies to bless, and to reproach or curse, so in Latin the same word precor signifies to supplicate good or evil, and precis signifies a prayer and a curse. See Imprecate. Class Brg, No. 3, and see No. 4, 6, 7, 8.]

  1. To ask with earnestness or zeal, as for a favor, or for something desirable; to entreat; to supplicate. Pray for them who despitefully use you and persecute you. – Matth. v.
  2. To petition; to ask, as for a favor; as in application to a legislative body.
  3. In worship, to address the Supreme Being with solemnity and reverence, with adoration, confession of sins, supplication for mercy, and thanksgiving for blessings received. When thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father who is in secret, and thy Father who seeth in secret, will reward thee openly. – Matth. vi.
  4. I pray, that is, I pray you tell me, or let me know, is a common mode of introducing a question.

PRAY, v.t.

  1. To supplicate; to entreat; to urge. We pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. – 2 Cor. v.
  2. In worship, to supplicate; to implore; to ask with reverence and humility. Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thy heart may be forgiven thee. – Acts viii.
  3. To petition. The plaintif prays judgment of the court. He that will have the benefit of this act, must pray a prohibition before a sentence in the ecclesiastical court. – Ayliffe.
  4. To ask or intreat in ceremony or form. Pray my colleague Antonius I may speak with him. – B. Jonson. [In most instances, this verb, is transitive only by ellipsis. To pray God, is used for to pray to God; to pray a prohibition, is to pray for a prohibition, &c.] To pray in aid, in law, is to call in for help one who has interest in the cause.

PRAY'ED, pp. [and pret. of Pray.]


  1. In a general sense, the act of asking for a favor and particularly with earnestness.
  2. In worship, a solemn address to the Supreme Being, consisting of adoration, or an expression of our sense of God's glorious perfections, confession of our sins, supplication for mercy and forgiveness, intercession for blessings on others, and thanksgiving, or an expression of gratitude to God for his mercies and benefits. A prayer however may consist of a single petition, and it may be extemporaneous, written or printed.
  3. A formula of church service, or of worship, public or private.
  4. Practice of supplication. As he is famed for mildness, peace and prayer. – Shak.
  5. That part of a memorial or petition to a public body, which specifies the request or thing desired to be done or granted, as distinct from the recital of facts or reasons for the grant. We say, the prayer of the petition is that the petitioner may be discharged from arrest.


A book containing prayers or the forms of devotion, public or private. – Swift.