[pil-grim, -gruh m] /ˈpɪl grɪm, -grəm/

a person who journeys, especially a long distance, to some sacred place as an act of religious devotion:
pilgrims to the Holy Land.
a traveler or wanderer, especially in a foreign place.
an original settler in a region.
(initial capital letter) one of the band of Puritans who founded the colony of Plymouth, Mass., in 1620.
a newcomer to a region or place, especially to the western U.S.
a person who undertakes a journey to a sacred place as an act of religious devotion
any wayfarer
See Canterbury Pilgrims (sense 2)

c.1200, pilegrim, from Old French pelerin, peregrin “pilgrim, crusader; foreigner, stranger” (11c., Modern French pèlerin), from Late Latin pelegrinus, dissimilated from Latin peregrinus “foreigner” (source of Italian pellegrino, Spanish peregrino), from peregre (adv.) “from abroad,” from per- “beyond” + agri, locative case of ager “country” (see acre).

Change of first -r- to -l- in most Romance languages by dissimilation; the -m appears to be a Germanic modification. Pilgrim Fathers “English Puritans who founded Plymouth colony” is first found 1799 (they called themselves Pilgrims from c.1630, in reference to Hebrew xi:13).


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