- a woman's handbag or pocketbook.
- a small bag, pouch, or case for carrying money.
- anything resembling a purse in appearance, use, etc.
- a sum of money offered as a prize or reward.
- a sum of money collected as a present or the like.
- money, resources, or wealth.
- to contract into folds or wrinkles; pucker: to purse one's lips.
- to put into a purse.
Origin of purse
Examples from the Web for purse
On one summer lunch hour, Donna Ann Levonuk, 50, lifted a tub of diaper cream priced at $43.98—and then stashed it in her purse.The Insane $11 Billion Scam at Retailers’ Return Desks
December 19, 2014
The padlocked door down the hall was now open, and I found my purse.I Was Gang Raped at a UVA Frat 30 Years Ago, and No One Did Anything
December 16, 2014
She retrieved a cigarette from her purse and lit it without moving her face away from the screen.I Watched a Casino Kill Itself: The Awful Last Nights of Atlantic City’s Taj Mahal
December 8, 2014
These are longer than traditional ads, mini-stories, designed to pull at heart- as well as purse strings.How Monty The Penguin Won Christmas: Britain’s Epic, Emotional Commercials
November 16, 2014
When I travel and kids run up to me, all that the girls want to do is look in my purse and put on my lip glosses and chapsticks.Q&A With Designer Rachel Roy
November 3, 2014
A portly burgher was he, friendly of tongue and free of purse.The Armourer's Prentices
Charlotte M. Yonge
It is impossible to doubt that this passion is fatal to more than the purse.
Any trifle will serve—a purse of gold, or even a jewelled goblet.
"If your cask is leer, I warrant your purse is full, gaffer," shouted Hordle John.
"The purse I have already given you, Edricson," continued the lady.
- a small bag or pouch, often made of soft leather, for carrying money, esp coins
- US and Canadian a woman's handbag
- anything resembling a small bag or pouch in form or function
- wealth; funds
- a sum of money that is offered, esp as a prize
- (tr) to contract (the mouth, lips, etc) into a small rounded shape
Word Origin and History for purse
Old English pursa "little bag made of leather," especially for carrying money, from Medieval Latin bursa "leather purse" (source also of Old French borse, 12c., Modern French bourse; cf. bourse), from Late Latin bursa, variant of byrsa "hide," from Greek byrsa "hide, leather." Change of b- to p- perhaps by influence of Old English pusa, Old Norse posi "bag."
Meaning "woman's handbag" is attested from 1951. Meaning "sum of money collected as a prize in a race, etc.," is from 1640s. Purse-strings, figurative for "control of money," is from early 15c. Purse-snatcher first attested 1902 (earlier purse-picker, 1540s). The notion of "drawn together by a thong" also is behind purse-net (c.1400).
c.1300, "put in a purse;" c.1600 as "draw together and wrinkle" (as the strings of a money bag), from purse (n.). Related: Pursed; pursing.
Idioms and Phrases with purse
In addition to the idiom beginning with purse
- purse strings
- can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear