Definition of pure in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /pjʊə/


1Not mixed or adulterated with any other substance or material: cars can run on pure alcohol the jacket was pure wool
More example sentences
  • All of these markets have exacting requirements for pure uncontaminated raw material.
  • The Hantex showroom has a big collection of kasavu saris, dhotis, furnishing materials as well as pure cotton products at affordable prices.
  • This tactile, sensual experience was made more poignant by the knowledge that these substances were pure, unalloyed, irreducible.
unmixed, unalloyed, unadulterated, unblended, uncontaminated, sterling, solid, refined, one hundred per cent, 100%;
clarified, clear, filtered, distilled, processed, neat, straight, undiluted;
flawless, perfect, genuine, authentic, real, actual, bona fide, veritable, pukka, true
1.1Without any extraneous and unnecessary elements: the romantic notion of pure art devoid of social responsibility
More example sentences
  • Although not pure art deco, its houses incorporated many of the elements of the style and large whitewashed villas now grace the south side.
  • But, of the pieces I've seen, the pure graphic element doesn't do much on a gut level for me, at least not yet.
  • When light passes through a spectroscope it breaks into bands of unique colors that represent pure elements.
1.2Free of any contamination: the pure, clear waters of Scotland
More example sentences
  • Valerie and Noel Trezise will offer you a wide range of pure sweet natural honey free of additives or preservatives.
  • He fought tenaciously for pure water, clean air, and the free use of condoms on the NHS.
  • Where is the crystal clear, pure, unpolluted water that once characterized the river as well as most shallow wells in the area?
clean, clear, fresh, crisp, refreshing, sparkling, unpolluted, untainted, unadulterated, uncontaminated;
wholesome, natural, healthy, health-giving, healthful, good for you;
salubrious, sanitary, uninfected, disinfected, germ-free, sterile, sterilized, pasteurized, aseptic
1.3 (also pure-bred) (Of an animal or plant) of unmixed origin or descent; pedigree: the pure Charolais is white or light wheat in the coat 80 pure-bred stallions were on parade
More example sentences
  • Iceland has these pure-bred horses that haven't changed in 900 years.
  • Xiao Yan's favorite pet is a pure-bred cat, which she purchased for 16,000 RMB. ‘Each month, I have to spend a few hundred dollars on essential care for the cat,’ she said.
  • The 28 student judges identified 16 matches out of the 25 pure-bred dogs, but they could not match mixed-breed dogs and their masters.
pedigree, thoroughbred, full, full-bred, pure-blooded, blooded, pedigreed, pure, genuine
2(Of a sound) perfectly in tune and with a clear tone: these small cymbals produce a quiet but high pitched and very pure note
More example sentences
  • The width of the bore and the large diameter of the tone holes gives it a strong, pure sound, invaluable to the military band and to the swing and dance big bands.
  • Intent upon moving beyond notes and creating pure sound, he borrowed from African, Indian, and Middle Eastern sources.
  • Each section was totally integrated, the sounds were pure and precise.
3Wholesome and untainted by immorality, especially that of a sexual nature: our fondness for each other is pure and innocent
More example sentences
  • From this standpoint, rural people and their culture represent a negation of everything that is wholesome and pure about nature.
  • Though he was not stupid, nor naïve, I told myself that he was like a child, ears, heart and mind pure and untainted with the thought of bloodshed and abuse.
  • Children are just the best thing there ever can be, the essence of innocence, their pure little hearts and minds not yet infected by our corrupt cold world.
virtuous, moral, ethical, good, righteous, angelic, saintly, pious, honourable, reputable, wholesome, clean, honest, upright, upstanding, exemplary, above reproach, irreproachable, innocent;
chaste, pure as the driven snow, virginal, maidenly;
decent, worthy, noble, blameless, guiltless, sinless, stainless, spotless, unsullied, unblemished, unspoilt, unaffected, uncorrupted, undefiled, anti-corruption
informal squeaky clean
Christianity  immaculate, impeccable
4(Of a subject of study) dealing with abstract concepts and not practical application: a theoretical discipline such as pure physics Compare with applied.
More example sentences
  • I believe in both the pure research & practical application of encryption theory.
  • It was a platform both for engineering and systems development studies and for pure scientific research.
  • I tend to think that the separation of application and pure research is the hallmark of poor ethics.
theoretical, abstract, conceptual, academic, hypothetical, philosophical, speculative, conjectural, non-practical, non-technical
informal blue-sky
5 [attributive] Involving or containing nothing else but; sheer (used for emphasis): a shout of pure anger an outcome which may be a matter of pure chance it was revenge, pure and simple
More example sentences
  • And what he saw to his sheer amazement was pure anger.
  • Two escapees once stumbled upon the oasis by a sheer chance and pure luck, thus becoming the parents of the somber population.
  • It's way more punk, way more lyrical, but more than all, it's rooted in despair and sheer rage and pure joy in celebrating humanity.
sheer, utter, simple, absolute, downright, out-and-out, rank, complete, thorough, total, perfect, consummate, unmitigated, unqualified, palpable, patent
archaic arrant
6 Phonetics (Of a vowel) not joined with another to form a diphthong.
Example sentences
  • You will sound fairly good if your teacher's modeling elicits a free sound that is well-focused on pure vowels.
  • While "pure" vowels, or monophthongs, are said to have one target tongue position, diphthongs have two target tongue positions.
  • There are 14 pure [uncombined] vowels in English.



Pronunciation: /ˈpjʊənəs/
Example sentences
  • He sings with a clarity, a pureness, that is so very human.
  • Arguably, one could hardly have improved on the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, with its weight, pureness of timbre, and intrinsic sympathy for the material.
  • He has a pureness about him that I wish more people had.


Middle English: from Old French pur 'pure', from Latin purus.

Words that rhyme with pure

abjure, adjure, allure, amour, assure, Bahawalpur, boor, Borobudur, Cavour, coiffure, conjure, couture, cure, dastur, de nos jours, doublure, dour, embouchure, endure, ensure, enure, gravure, immature, immure, impure, inure, Jaipur, Koh-i-noor, Kultur, liqueur, lure, manure, moor, Moore, Muir, mure, Nagpur, Namur, obscure, parkour, photogravure, plat du jour, Pompadour, procure, rotogravure, Ruhr, Saussure, secure, simon-pure, spoor, Stour, sure, tour, Tours, velour, Yom Kippur, you're

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: pure

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.