from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Genuinely and thoroughly pure.
  • adjective Superficially or hypocritically virtuous.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Genuine; authentic; true.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Genuine; true; real; authentic; -- a term alluding to the comedy character Simon Pure, who is impersonated by another and is obliged to prove himself to be the “real Simon Pure.”

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective UK Absolutely pure.


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

[From the phrase the real Simon Pure, after Simon Pure, a character in the play A Bold Stroke for a Wife by Susannah Centlivre (1669–1723).]


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  • "It was no use now to cry that she was not an intellectual who had not made the grade, that she was a simon-pure rube; not a soul would believe her."

    Jean Stafford, "Children Are Bored on Sunday," in David Remnick, ed., Wonderful Town: New York Stories from the New Yorker (New York: Random House, 2000), pp. 360-61.

    October 12, 2015