Definition of prison in English:
- The significance of this duty to those detained in prison, not least where prisons are crowded and prisoners often dangerous, is obvious.
- I was told that Mr Young is in prison in the USA awaiting trial on charges of fraud.
- People who have been in prison and who visit prisons will be with us.
verb (prisons, prisoning, prisoned)[with object] literary Back to top
This comes via Old French from Latin prehendere ‘to seize’. Prehendere is a rich source of English words, being found, amongst many, in apprehend (late 16th century), comprehend (late 16th century); prehensile (late 18th century); and reprehensible (Late Middle English). A shortening of prehendere lies behind praedari ‘plunder’ and praeda ‘booty’, which lie behind depredation (Late Middle English); predatory [L16]; and prey (Middle English).
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