verb (used with object), pe·rused, pe·rus·ing.

to read through with thoroughness or care: to peruse a report.
to scan or browse: The shoppers perused the magazines near the cash register while waiting to check out.
to read.
to survey or examine in detail.

Origin of peruse

1470–80 in sense “use up, go through”; 1525–35 for current senses; per- + use
Related formspe·rus·a·ble, adjectivepe·rus·er, nounpre·pe·ruse, verb (used with object), pre·pe·rused, pre·pe·rus·ing.qua·si-pe·rus·a·ble, adjectivere·pe·ruse, verb (used with object), re·pe·rused, re·pe·rus·ing.un·pe·rus·a·ble, adjectiveun·pe·rused, adjective
Can be confusedperuse pursue Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for peruse

Contemporary Examples of peruse

Historical Examples of peruse

British Dictionary definitions for peruse


verb (tr)

to read or examine with care; study
to browse or read through in a leisurely way
Derived Formsperusal, nounperuser, noun

Word Origin for peruse

C15 (meaning: to use up): from per- (intensive) + use
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for peruse

late 15c., "use up, wear out, go through," from Middle English per- "completely" (see per) + use (v.). Meaning "read carefully" is first recorded 1530s, but this could be a separate formation. Meaning "read casually" is from 19c. Related: Perused; perusing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper