from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. The state or quality of being prudish.
- n. An instance of prudish behavior or talk.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The condition of being prudish; prudishness
- n. Prudish behaviour
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The quality or state of being prudish; excessive or affected scrupulousness in speech or conduct; stiffness; coyness.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. The quality or character of being prudish; extreme propriety in behavior; affected coyness or modesty; primness.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. excessive or affected modesty
From this professional and social high point, the swift collapse of Lawrence's reputation after his death in 1830, partly as the result of Victorian prudery, is an interesting matter of social history as much as art history.
Recent studies in India, for example, where sexual prudery is the norm, show that very possibly a majority of girls are sexually molested, often by family members such as cousins, uncles, fathers and brothers.
But the Serbs are not only peasants in prudery, they are artists and have some knowledge of handicrafts, so they saw that it was natural for a man cutting out the shape of a man to cut out the true shape of a man; they felt, therefore, no Puritan hatred of the statue, and their peasant thrift told them that it would be wicked waste to throw away a statue well carved in expensive material by an acknowledged master.
He speaks of these matters in the down right way of old times without any appearance of prudery, which is very different from our fastidious treatment of these subjects.
 In one of its civilized developments, this ritualized modesty becomes prudery, which is defined by Forel (_Die Sexuelle Frage_, Fifth ed., p. 125) as "codified sexual morality."
Dismiss it as "prudery" or call it bullshit if you want, I don't really care.
"I cannot affect," she says, "a prudery which is not natural to me."
Certainly this accounts for much that is called "prudery" in women, whose repressed and starved instincts revenge themselves in a morbid (mental) preoccupation with the details of vice.
1. That was part of the irony of using the word "prudery".
"prudery" began: the great lords yielded on this as on Free Trade.
Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.