Preen meaning

prēn
Preen is defined as to take great care in cleaning oneself or another.

An example of preen is a bird cleaning its feathers.

An example of preen is a woman carefully plucking her eyebrows.

verb
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To dress or groom (oneself) with elaborate care; primp.
verb
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To clean and trim (the feathers) with the beak.
verb
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To dress or groom (oneself) in a fussy and self-satisfied way.
verb
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To show satisfaction with or vanity in (oneself)
verb
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To dress or groom oneself in a fussy and self-satisfied way.
verb
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noun
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(dialectal) Pin.
noun
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(dialectal) Bodkin; brooch.
noun
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To pin; fasten.
verb
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(of birds) To groom; to trim or dress with the beak, as the feathers.
verb
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To show off, posture, or smarm.
verb
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(UK, dialect, dated) To trim up, as trees.

verb
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To take pride or satisfaction in (oneself); gloat.
verb
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To dress up; primp.
verb
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To swell with pride; gloat or exult.
verb
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1

Origin of preen

  • Middle English proinen, preinen blend of Old French proignier to prune prune2 and Old French poroindre to anoint before (por- before) (from Latin prō- pro–1) (oindre to anoint) (from Latin unguere)

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Middle English pren, from Old English prÄ“on, from Proto-Germanic *preunaz (compare Icelandic prjónn (“pin, knitting-needle"), Danish pryne "˜needle, eel-spear'), from Proto-Indo-European *brewn- (“protrusion, tip, edge") (compare Lithuanian briaunà "˜edge', Albanian brez "˜belt, girdle'). The verb is from Middle English prenen, from pren (“a preen").

    From Wiktionary

  • Variant of prune (by influence of preen above) Attested in Chaucer (c. 1395) in the variants preyneth, prayneth, proyneth, prunyht, pruneth.

    From Wiktionary