Definition of purvey in English:



[with object]formal
  • 1Provide or supply (food, drink, or other goods) as one's business.

    ‘shops purveying cooked food’
    • ‘All are meant to purvey the same message of ubiquitousness, a sinister blend of reassurance and menace.’
    • ‘Unless MPs and other leaders are pro-active, there will be very little room for prophets of doom who may wish to take advantage of some weaknesses and use these as fertile ground to purvey lies and discontent.’
    • ‘However, in the discourse of food and social level purveyed by this image, a more specific message is communicated by that eroticism.’
    • ‘Credit cards are convenient, but few individuals have setups where they can handle the plastic, that being the purvey of businesses who deal in volume.’
    • ‘He purveys the usual Labour beliefs in comprehensive education.’
    • ‘What that spyware is trying to do is collect that information and the people who are purveying it trying to sell it.’
    • ‘It purveys locally produced foods, wines, olive oils, cheeses and breads.’
    • ‘We left that hell hole behind us chomping down on the strange alien food purveyed at the exit.’
    • ‘The dead man was one of many black Africans purveying goods outside normal shop hours and without work permits.’
    • ‘They purveyed all sorts of nonsense to US and UK newspapers, who swallowed it hook line and sinker.’
    • ‘In February 1342 he and William were instructed to sell all victuals purveyed by them.’
    • ‘Our agenda is simply to delight hundreds of millions of children, harmlessly purveying the wholesome, uplifting values of community decency.’
    • ‘Interestingly, most adware companies slough off criticism onto their affiliates when caught purveying their unwanted goods.’
    • ‘More than 20 million web pages purvey pornography to suit every taste, ‘adult’ chat rooms abound and virtual peepshows are proliferating at a staggering rate.’
    • ‘In this effort, advertising companies have notoriously used women as objects to purvey their products.’
    • ‘At the other end of the city a sex shop proprietor had to fight tooth and nail to obtain a licence to sell his wares, while just around the corner a shop purveying the same stock does not need a licence because he sells candles as well.’
    • ‘As I see it, we have a perfect example here of the left trying to muzzle or altogether silence a weblog that purveys ideas they don't like or agree with.’
    • ‘Occasionally, it seems to be their recording technique which purveys a great deal of the album's intimacy rather than the content.’
    • ‘Though never quite managing to hit commercial paydirt, Glasgow-born singer/songwriter John Martyn has carved out an acclaimed career by purveying an idiosyncratic mix of rock, folk and jazz.’
    • ‘The latter, in its legal and typical form, was a few stalls in a nearby town where peasant women purveyed food to urban-dwellers.’
    sell, supply, provide, furnish, cater, retail, deal in, trade, carry, handle, stock, offer, auction, have for sale, put on the market, peddle, hawk, tout, traffic in
    pass on, transmit, broadcast, disseminate, spread, put round, put about, circulate, communicate, make known, publicize, publish
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Spread or promote (an idea, view, etc.)
      ‘we didn't want to purvey gloom and doom’
      • ‘He sets out to disprove the notion purveyed by Republican sympathizers that the media is biased to the left.’
      • ‘Those of them who master its lessons will be inoculated against all manner of ideological nonsense purveyed by their leftist professors.’
      • ‘He purveys the usual Labour beliefs in comprehensive education.’
      • ‘They purveyed the lie that Connolly was entirely opposed to the use of armed struggle.’
      • ‘It purveys a sense of yearning.’
      • ‘Delinquency was theorized by some as a rejection and inversion of the middle-class values purveyed by the school and, by others, as a celebration of working-class values.’
      • ‘All are meant to purvey the same message of ubiquitousness, a sinister blend of reassurance and menace.’
      • ‘The conservative talk jocks have been purveying this canard to explain their monopoly of the spectrum.’
      • ‘The media continue to purvey subtle (and not so subtle) messages that entrench stereotypical gender conceptions.’
      • ‘They then become a center of excellence purveying their expertise to the public at large.’
      • ‘On occasion, Soviet students openly disputed with lecturers purveying official truths, and this was quite shocking for traditionalists.’
      • ‘Thus there is two-fold resistance to the dominant patterns of interpretation which have been purveyed by the mainstream churches.’
      • ‘The ignorance purveyed by these programs puts young people at risk of HIV infection and premature death.’
      • ‘Occasionally, it seems to be their recording technique which purveys a great deal of the album's intimacy rather than the content.’
      • ‘Wordsworth was complaining about modernity, not the media; the difference in how information is purveyed today is by degrees.’
      • ‘Contrary to the impression purveyed by the media, federalism is opposed by a clear majority of Iraqis - by a majority of Sunnis and a majority of Shi'ites alike.’
      • ‘The government, purveying seriousness, can now be affronted with silliness.’
      • ‘In the case of Vietnam, the anchor began as a reliable mouthpiece for the optimistic scenarios purveyed by the Johnson administration.’
      • ‘His study of representative contemporary types in Irishmen all purveyed an inclusive notion of Irish nationhood.’
      • ‘Common ownership can result in the same selectively chosen information and the same opinions being purveyed by different media outlets.’


Middle English: from Anglo-Norman French purveier, from Latin providere ‘foresee, attend to’ (see provide). Early senses included ‘foresee’, ‘attend to in advance’, and ‘equip’.