Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To have or present the often false appearance of being or intending; profess: selfish behavior that purports to be altruistic.
  • transitive v. To have the intention of doing; purpose.
  • n. Meaning presented, intended, or implied; import. See Synonyms at substance.
  • n. Intention; purpose.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To convey, imply, or profess outwardly, often falsely.
  • v. To intend.
  • n. import, intention or purpose

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Design or tendency; meaning; import; tenor.
  • n. Disguise; covering.
  • transitive v. To intend to show; to intend; to mean; to signify; to import; -- often with an object clause or infinitive.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To convey to the mind as the meaning or thing intended; imply; mean, or seem to mean: as, the document purported to be official.
  • n. Meaning; tenor; import; nature: as, the purport of a letter.
  • n. Pretext; disguise; covering.
  • n. Synonyms Gist, drift, sense, signification.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the intended meaning of a communication
  • v. have the often specious appearance of being, intending, or claiming
  • v. propose or intend
  • n. the pervading meaning or tenor

Etymologies

Middle English purporten, to set forth, from Anglo-Norman purporter : pur-, forth (from Latin prō-; see pro-1) + porter, to carry (from Latin portāre; see per-2 in Indo-European roots).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Anglo-Norman, from purporter ("contain"), from Old French pur-, from Latin pro ("forth") + Old French porter ("carry"), from Latin portō ("carry"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Admittedly, this is much ado about nothing since the Dems control the legislature and the state, and the few state republicans left will watch gleefully as the dems once again purport to tell the voters what's good for them. ichong

    Patrick supports Kennedy's wish for interim senator

  • Not a penny of it has reached the contracted artists the labels purport to represent.

    RIAA: beginning of the end

  • *** The main purport of my writing is, to tell you that we have found a house for the next half year.

    Letter 224

  • To the same purport is v. 8, for the transgression of my people was he smitten, the stroke was upon him that should have been upon us; and so some read it, He was cut off for the iniquity of my people, unto whom the stroke belonged, or was due.

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume IV (Isaiah to Malachi)

  • We have many promises to this purport from the mouth of our Lord Jesus, and all to encourage faith, the principal grace, and prayer, the principal duty, of a

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume V (Matthew to John)

  • To the same purport is that (v. 14), That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy

    Commentary on the Whole Bible Volume VI (Acts to Revelation)

  • While the lenders reserved all other rights and remedies that might be available under the credit agreement, but "did not by its terms purport to accelerate the maturity of the obligations outstanding."

    SiliconBeat

  • While the labels purport to "help customers find their stores 'healthiest foods," Stier reminds us,

    Medlogs - Recent stories

  • Probably events like these fall outside the penumbra of those laws, but their purport is clear – your responsibility as an employer is to not discriminate, and if 90% of your workforce, for instance is male and white, you’d have some ’splaining to do.

    Future of White Boys’ Clubs Redux #fowaspeak | FactoryCity

  • To make my Dream more monstrous and unlikely, one of these had words and sentences upon its body, inscribed there, at an unknown time, and in an unknown language; so that their purport was a mystery to all men.

    Pictures from Italy

Wordnik is becoming a not-for-profit! Read our announcement here.

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.