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Word of the Day
Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Definitions for perambulator

  1. baby carriage.
  2. an odometer pushed by a person walking.
  3. a person who makes a tour of inspection on foot.

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Citations for perambulator
Having the baby with her in a perambulator, Mrs. Finn called out to him to go away, and as he persisted in coming nearer, she hit him courageously with her umbrella over the head ... Joseph Conrad, "Amy Foster," Illustrated London News, December 1901
He refused them, and ordered her to wheel baby's perambulator away, as they desired to be alone. E. M. Forster, Howards End, 1910
Origin of perambulator
Perambulator derives from the Latin verb perambulāre “to ramble, stroll” and, of physicians, “to make one’s rounds, visit patients.” Perambulator in its original sense “a person who strolls, pedestrian” appears in the early 17th century but is now quaint. By the late 17th century perambulator had developed the meaning “surveyor” (i.e. a person who surveys), and a little later, “a wheeled machine, attached to a handle, pushed by a worker to measure distances” (also called an odometer). From the wheeled device attached to a handle and pushed by a person, the most common modern sense of perambulator, “baby carriage,” arose in the mid-19th century; it is chiefly a British word of older usage, and the source of the shortened form pram.