- 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
Related Words for pursingpocketbook, pocket, wallet, bag, handbag, pouch, money, reward, prize, gift, wealth, pucker, poke, hide, leather, clutch, frame, sack, receptacle, bursa
Examples from the Web for pursing
Contemporary Examples of pursing
My present—and it is to be hoped permanent—wife is not off pursing a spouse more to her liking.What Did TJ Mean By “Pursuit of Happiness,” Anyway?
P. J. O’Rourke
June 8, 2014
Historical Examples of pursing
He lifted his brows, pursing his lips whimsically; and Amelia laughed.Tiverton Tales
"Conscience-money," said Mr. Bonnithorne, pursing up his mouth.A Son of Hagar
Sir Hall Caine
He just raised his head when I looked in and shook it negatively, pursing up his lips.Under Western Eyes
"Measles—or influenza," he said, with a pursing of the lips.Nell, of Shorne Mills
"Neither bond nor free," Harold said, pursing his lips and lifting his brows.Quin
Alice Hegan Rice
- 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 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.
In addition to the idiom beginning with purse
- purse strings
- can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear