purlieu

[ pur-loo, purl-yoo ]
/ ˈpɜr lu, ˈpɜrl yu /

noun

purlieus, environs or neighborhood.
a place where one may range at large; confines or bounds.
a person's haunt or resort.
an outlying district or region, as of a town or city.
a piece of land on the edge of a forest, originally land that, after having been included in a royal forest, was restored to private ownership, though still subject, in some respects, to the operation of the forest laws.

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Origin of purlieu

1475–85; alteration (simulating French lieu place) of earlier parlewe, parley, paraley purlieu of a forest <Anglo-French purale(e) a going through, equivalent to pur (<Latin prō for, pro1, confused with per through) + aller (see alley1)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for purlieu

British Dictionary definitions for purlieu

purlieu
/ (ˈpɜːljuː) /

noun

English history land on the edge of a forest that was once included within the bounds of the royal forest but was later separated although still subject to some of the forest laws, esp regarding hunting
(usually plural) a neighbouring area; outskirts
(often plural) a place one frequents; haunt
rare a district or suburb, esp one that is poor or squalid

Word Origin for purlieu

C15 purlewe, from Anglo-French puralé a going through (influenced also by Old French lieu place), from Old French puraler to traverse, from pur through + aler to go
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