People ask me this rather a lot. It's not that I go around pinning paper napkins over ladies' cleavages, or waddling around inside a sandwich board bearing the slogan NICE PEOPLE WEAR GLOVES.
It's because my surname is Prue - which, is, I admit, so unlikely that it's pretty much inevitable that people will wonder if they've heard correctly. And then, feeling slightly foolish, that they'll try a joke.
Still, prude. It's a horrible word, isn't it? What makes it especially nasty is that the oo part of it lasts more or less forever, especially if you come from certain districts of Scotland.
Luckily, we have alternatives to this horrid word, and I suggest that either prig or, simply, spoilsport will usually do just as well.
Advert for Mr Bowdler's famous piece of prudery.
Word Not To Use Today: prude. This word comes from the French prode femme, which means respectable woman, from the Latin prōdesse, to be of value.
The surname Prue is derived from the Middle English prou meaning valiant.