pry (v.1)

"look inquisitively, look closely or with scrutinizing curiosity," c. 1300, prien "to peer in," a word of unknown origin, perhaps related to late Old English bepriwan "to wink." Related: Pried; prying. As a noun, "act of prying, curious or close inspection," from 1750; meaning "inquisitive, intrusive person" is from 1845.

pry (v.2)

"raise or move by force," 1823, from a noun meaning "large lever used to raise or move heavy things, crowbar;" an alteration of prize (as though it were a plural) in its obsolete sense of "lever" (c. 1300), from Old French prise "a taking hold, grasp" (see prize (n.2)).

updated on January 01, 2021

Definitions of pry from WordNet
pry (v.)
to move or force, especially in an effort to get something open;
Raccoons managed to pry the lid off the garbage pail
Synonyms: prise / prize / lever / jimmy
pry (v.)
be nosey;
Don't pry into my personal matters!
pry (v.)
search or inquire in a meddlesome way;
Synonyms: intrude / horn in / nose / poke
pry (v.)
make an uninvited or presumptuous inquiry;
They pried the information out of him
Synonyms: prise
pry (n.)
a heavy iron lever with one end forged into a wedge;
Synonyms: crowbar / wrecking bar / pry bar
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