Main definitions of purl in English

: purl1purl2

purl1

Pronunciation /pərl/

Translate purl into Spanish

adjective

attributive
  • Denoting or relating to a knitting stitch made by putting the needle through the front of the stitch from right to left.

    Compare with knit (adjective)

transitive verb

[with object]
  • Knit with a purl stitch.

    • ‘knit one, purl one’
    gurgle, bubble, murmur, purr, purl, tinkle, whir, drone, rumble, buzz, hum

noun

  • 1A cord of twisted gold or silver wire used for bordering or edging something.

    1. 1.1An ornamental edging of lace or ribbon.

Origin

Late Middle English (as noun): of uncertain origin.

Main definitions of purl in English

: purl1purl2

purl2

Pronunciation /pərl/

Translate purl into Spanish

intransitive verb

[no object]
  • (of a stream or river) flow with a swirling motion and babbling sound.

    ‘large stones stood blackly in the water, making it purl as it rolled around them’
    • ‘The water gurgled and purled, loudly at first, then softly, as a powerful foot-wide whirlpool took shape.’
    • ‘Miri could not imagine there was such a beautiful place as the island of Philae, an island amongst islands washed by the purling waters of the Nile.’
    • ‘I look out of the window and through the purling drops I can see gutters running with water; I can see the clouds almost black with rain to come.’
    • ‘He sits on the bank and, wretched, stares into the purling water.’
    splash, wash, swish, slap, slosh, break, purl

noun

in singular
  • A purling motion or sound.

    ‘it was quiet except for the liquid purl of the fountain’
    • ‘His hands just purled off notes in all shapes and forms.’
    • ‘The shadows lurched forward, purling around his ankles like tendrils of smoke.’
    • ‘No. 23 (F Major - Moderato) purls off the piano like drops of water for some forty seconds before the conclusion begins, in No. 24 (D Minor - Allegro appassionato), sweeping, broad, interlaced with runs.’
    • ‘A mercurial figure whom Sacco often draws veiled in purls of cigarette smoke, Neven is a ‘fixer,’ a source and guide to foreign journalists seeking access to the front lines.’
    • ‘‘See how easily the white meat slices,’ a dark, rumbling voice purled around the gunner's ears.’
    • ‘Somewhere in the alleyway outside, cat song purled into the night.’
    splash, purl, babble, burble

Origin

Early 16th century (denoting a small swirling stream): probably imitative; compare with Norwegian purla ‘bubble up’.