American Dictionary of the English Language, Vol. 2

Author: Noah Webster


PRY, v.i. [a contracted word, the origin of which is not obvious.]

To peep narrowly; to inspect closely; to attempt to discover something with scrutinizing curiosity, whether impertinently or not; as, to pry into the mysteries of nature, or into the secrets of state.

Nor need we with a prying eye survey

The distant skies to find the milky way.

PRY, n. Narrow inspection; impertinent peeping.

PRY, v.t. To raise or attempt to raise with a lever. This is the common popular pronunciation of prize, in America. The lever used is also called a pry.