pilgrim

[ pil-grim, -gruh m ]
/ ˈpɪl grɪm, -grəm /

noun

a person who journeys, especially a long distance, to some sacred place as an act of religious devotion: pilgrims to the Holy Land.
a traveler or wanderer, especially in a foreign place.
an original settler in a region.
(initial capital letter) one of the band of Puritans who founded the colony of Plymouth, Mass., in 1620.
a newcomer to a region or place, especially to the western U.S.

Nearby words

  1. pileus,
  2. pilewort,
  3. pilfer,
  4. pilferage,
  5. pilgarlic,
  6. pilgrim bottle,
  7. pilgrim fathers,
  8. pilgrim's progress,
  9. pilgrimage,
  10. pilgrimage of grace

Origin of pilgrim

1150–1200; Middle English pilegrim, pelegrim, cognate with Old Frisian pilegrīm, Middle Low German pelegrīm, Old High German piligrīm, Old Norse pīlagrīmr, all < Medieval Latin pelegrīnus, dissimilated variant of Latin peregrīnus peregrine

Related formspil·gri·mat·ic, pil·gri·mat·i·cal, adjective

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pilgrim


British Dictionary definitions for pilgrim

pilgrim

/ (ˈpɪlɡrɪm) /

noun

a person who undertakes a journey to a sacred place as an act of religious devotion
any wayfarer

Word Origin for pilgrim

C12: from Provençal pelegrin, from Latin peregrīnus foreign, from per through + ager field, land; see peregrine

Pilgrim

/ (ˈpɪlɡrɪm) /

noun

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 pilgrim

pilgrim

n.

c.1200, pilegrim, from Old French pelerin, peregrin "pilgrim, crusader; foreigner, stranger" (11c., Modern French pèlerin), from Late Latin pelegrinus, dissimilated from Latin peregrinus "foreigner" (source of Italian pellegrino, Spanish peregrino), from peregre (adv.) "from abroad," from per- "beyond" + agri, locative case of ager "country" (see acre).

Change of first -r- to -l- in most Romance languages by dissimilation; the -m appears to be a Germanic modification. Pilgrim Fathers "English Puritans who founded Plymouth colony" is first found 1799 (they called themselves Pilgrims from c.1630, in reference to Hebrew xi:13).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper