The Alternative English Dictionary

Android app on Google Play

Colourful extracts from Wiktionary. Slang, vulgarities, profanities, slurs, interjections, colloquialisms and more.


etymology 1 From Old French paire, from Latin paria, neuter plural of pār. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /peə(r)/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{homophones}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Two similar or identical thing taken together; often followed by of.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
    exampleI couldn't decide which of the pair of designer shirts I preferred, so I bought the pair.
  2. Two people in a relationship, partnership (especially sexual) or friendship. exampleSpouses should make a great pair.
  3. Used with binary noun (often in the plural to indicate multiple instances, since such nouns are plurale tantum) examplea pair of scissors; two pairs of spectacles; several pairs of jeans
  4. A couple of working animals attached to work together, as by a yoke. exampleA pair is harder to drive than two mounts with separate riders.
  5. (cards) A poker hand that contains of two card of identical rank, which cannot also count as a better hand.
  6. (cricket) A score of zero run (a duck) in both innings of a two-innings match
  7. (baseball, informal) A double play, two out recorded in one play exampleThey turned a pair to end the fifth.
  8. (baseball, informal) A doubleheader, two games played on the same day between the same teams exampleThe Pirates took a pair from the Phillies.
  9. (slang) A pair of breast exampleShe's got a gorgeous pair.
  10. (Australia, politics) The exclusion of one member of a parliamentary party from a vote, if a member of the other party is absent for important personal reasons.
  11. Two members of opposite parties or opinion, as in a parliamentary body, who mutually agree not to vote on a given question, or on issues of a party nature during a specified time. There were two pairs on the final vote.
  12. (archaic) A number of things resembling one another, or belonging together; a set.
    • Charles Dickens plunging myself into poverty and shabbiness and love in one room up three pair of stairs
    • Beaumont and Fletcher Two crowns in my pocket, two pair of cards.
  13. (kinematics) In a mechanism, two elements, or bodies, which are so applied to each other as to mutually constrain relative motion; named in accordance with the motion it permits, as in turning pair, sliding pair, twisting pair.
Synonyms: two objects in a group: duo, dyad, couple, brace, twosome, duplet, (pair of breasts) See also
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To group into sets of two.
    • Alexander Pope Glossy jet is paired with shining white.
    The wedding guests were paired boy/girl and groom's party/bride's party.
  2. (transitive) To bring two (animal, notably dog) together for mating.
  3. (politics, slang) To engage (oneself) with another of opposite opinions not to vote on a particular question or class of questions.
  4. (intransitive) To suit; to fit, as a counterpart.
    • Rowe My heart was made to fit and pair with thine.
{{Webster 1913}}
  1. (computing) to form wireless connection between to devices
    • {{quote-web }} If your computer has a built-in, non-Microsoft transceiver, you can pair the device directly to the computer by using your computer’s Bluetooth software configuration program but without using the Microsoft Bluetooth transceiver.
related terms:
  • parity
etymology 2
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (obsolete) To impair. {{rfquotek}}
  • PIRA
pair of eyeglasses
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A pair of lens set in a frame worn on the nose and ears in order to correct deficiencies in eyesight or to ornament the face.
Synonyms: eyeglasses (US), glasses, pair of glasses, spectacles, pair of specs (colloquial), pair of spectacles, specs (colloquial)
pair of glasses
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A pair of lens set in a frame worn on the nose and ears in order to correct deficiencies in eyesight or to ornament the face.
Synonyms: eyeglasses (US), glasses, pair of eyeglasses (US), spectacles, pair of specs (colloquial), pair of spectacles, specs (colloquial)
pair of specs
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A pair of lens set in a frame worn on the nose and ears in order to correct deficiencies in eyesight or to ornament the face.
Synonyms: eyeglasses (US), glasses, pair of eyeglasses (US), spectacles, pair of glasses, pair of spectacles, specs (colloquial)
pair of spectacles
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A pair of lens set in a frame worn on the nose and ears in order to correct deficiencies in eyesight or to ornament the face.
Synonyms: eyeglasses (US), glasses, pair of eyeglasses (US), spectacles, pair of specs (colloquial), pair of glasses, specs (colloquial)
paisa {{wikipedia}}
etymology 1 From Hindi पैसा 〈paisā〉 (paisā).
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A subdivision of currency, equal to a 1/100th of a rupee in various Asian countries.
  2. (historical) (British India) A subdivision of currency equivalent to 1/64th of a rupee.
  3. A subdivision of currency, equal to a 1/100th of a Bangladeshi taka.
etymology 2 From Spanish paisa, a shortening of paisano.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A Mexican national, especially a rural/rustic one.
pajock Alternative forms: paiock, paiocke, pajocke
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (archaic) A peacock, a male peafowl, noted for its large and extravagantly coloured tail.
  2. (obsolete, pejorative) A person. (The precise implications of this term are unclear, but it may suggest vanity.)
  • {{circa}} William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, Act 3, scene 2: For thou dost know, O Damon dear, This realm dismantled was Of Jove himself, and now reigns here A very very — pajock
  • 1954, C. S. Lewis, The Horse and His Boy (ISBN 0007206550), Chapter 15: “Peace! Your Majesties! My Lords!” said King Lune. “Have we no more gravity among us than to be so chafed by the taunt of a pajock?”
  • The Tower of Zanid, L. Sprague De Camp, 1958, “And wearing my stolen beard, I'll be bound! I'll trounce the pugging pajock in seemly style!”
  • A Knight in Shining Armor, page 111, Jude Deveraux, 2002, ““Dickie Harewood is a tardy-gaited, unhaired pajock.” Dougless frowned, not understanding. “An ass, madam,” Nicholas explained.”
Paki etymology Shortened from Pakistani pronunciation
  • /ˈpæki/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (British, Canada, offensive, racial slur) A Pakistani
  2. (British, Canada, offensive, racial slur) Anyone whose origins are perceived to be from South Asia/the India subcontinent.
Paki acquired offensive connotations in the 1960s when used by British tabloids to refer to subjects of former colony states in a derogatory and racist manner. In modern British usage "Paki" is typically a derogatory label used for all South Asians, including Indians, Afghans and Bangladeshis. To a lesser extent, it has also been applied to Arabs and others perceived to resemble South Asians. During the 60's many emigrants were also dubbed as "black" to further segregate them from the white community. Some would say such a division still exists in parts of England. In recent times there has been a trend by second and third-generation British Pakistanis to reclaim the word, so that it can be used between young British Pakistanis, but not by outsiders, even Indians and Bangladeshis.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (British, Canada, pejorative) Pakistani, or perceived to be Pakistani.
  • kipa, pika
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (British, pejorative) In skinhead culture the act of physical or verbal attacks by non-Asian against Pakistani or, frequently, people perceived to be Pakistani.
Paki shop
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, offensive slang, ethnic slur) A corner shop run by a Pakistani or any other person of South Asian descent.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. A language of Papua New Guinea.
  2. (informal, slang) Palestine.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, slang) Palestinian. Saeb Erekat, who negotiates for Palestine, is one of the most famous Pals in the world.
  • alp, ALP
  • APL
  • lap
  • LPA
  • PLA
pal etymology From rme phal, from Romany phral, from Sanskrit भ्रातृ 〈bhrātr̥〉, from Proto-Indo-European *bʰréh₂tēr 〈*bʰréh₂tēr〉. Cognates also include English brother, Ancient Greek φράτηρ 〈phrátēr〉, Latin frater. pronunciation
  • (UK) /pal/
  • (US) /pæl/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial) A friend, buddy, mate, cobber, someone to hang around with.
Synonyms: See also , galpal
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. Be friends with, hang around with. John plans to pal around with Joe today.
related terms:
  • palsy-walsy
  • alp, ALP
  • APL
  • lap
  • LPA
  • PLA
palaver {{was wotd}} etymology Originally nautical slang, from Portuguese palavra, from ll parabola. The term's use (especially in Africa) mimics the evolution of the word moot. As such, for sense development, see moot. pronunciation
  • (UK) /pəˈlɑː.və(ɹ)/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Africa) A village council meeting, a folkmoot
  2. Talk, especially unnecessary talk, fuss.
    • 1886, , The Princess Casamassima. These remarks were received with a differing demonstration: some of the company declaring that if the Dutchman cared to come round and smoke a pipe they would be glad to see him—perhaps he'd show where the thumbscrews had been put on; others being strongly of the opinion that they didn't want any more advice—they had already had advice enough to turn a donkey's stomach. What they wanted was to put forth their might without any more palaver; to do something, or for some one; to go out somewhere and smash something, on the spot—why not?—that very night.
    • 1899, , Active Service: Knowing full well the right time and the wrong time for a palaver of regret and disavowal, this battalion struggled in the desperation of despair.
    • 1985, , Option Lock, p 229: Not for the first time, he reflected that it was not so much the speeches that strained the nerves as the palaver that went with them.
  3. A meeting at which there is much talk; a debate, a moot.
    • Carlyle This epoch of parliaments and eloquent palavers.
  4. (informal) Disagreement I have no palaver with him.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To discuss with much talk.
    • 1860, Atlantic Monthly, vol. 5, no. 30 (April), “That,” he rejoined, “is a way we Americans have. We cannot stop to palaver. What would become of our manifest destiny?”
Synonyms: See also
etymology 1 pale + ass
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (offensive, derogatory, slang, ethnic slur) A contemptible white person
    • 1793, Tobias George Smollett, The expedition of Humphry Clinker: Volume 1, page 156 And I have seen the Park, and the paleass of Saint Gimses, and the king's and the queen's magisterial pursing, and the sweet young princes, and the hillyfents and pye- bald ass, and all the rest of the royal family.
    • 2002, Nick Tosches, In the hand of Dante, link ...while almost everybody in this joint was black, this guy, even on dialysis, had the brothers as scared of him as he had us few paleass motherfuckers scared of him...
    • 2011, John Brunner, Bruce Sterling, Stand on Zanzibar, page 75 On the verge of anger—trust a paleass to misunderstand me!—Norman controlled himself.
etymology 2
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. obsolete form of palace
paleface Alternative forms: Paleface etymology pale + face. Attributed to the .
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (pejorative, slang) A white person; a person of descent.
    • Paleface speak with forked tongue.
  • See the usage notes about whiteface.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) paleodiet
paleocon etymology {{abbreviation-old}} of paleoconservative
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A paleoconservative: a person who holds positions associated with paleoconservatism, such as states' rights and opposition to social change
related terms:
  • neocon
  • theocon
Palestinian Alternative forms: Palæstinian (archaic) pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Of, from, or pertaining to Palestine or the Palestinian people.
Synonyms: Filastini Prior to 1948 {{C.E.}}, "Palestinian" was used in reference to the whole area known at that time as Palestine before the establishment of the State of Israel. For example, today’s English‐language Israeli newspaper The Jerusalem Post was called The Palestine Post under the ; also the Palestinian Orchestra was a Jewish orchestra.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. An inhabitant of Palestine or an Arab descending from that area.
  2. An inhabitant of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, legally governed by the .
Synonyms: Pal, Pally (informal), Filastini (chiefly used by Muslims and Arabs), Falestinian, Filastinian (rare, chiefly used by Muslims and Arabs), Fakestinian, Palestinkian (derogatory and hence offensive)
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (childish, derogatory) synonym of Palestinian
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (childish, derogatory, ethnic slur) synonym of Palestinian
pallet jack
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A manually operated device for lifting and moving pallets.
Synonyms: pallet truck, pump truck
pallet truck
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A manually operated device for lifting and moving pallets.
Synonyms: pallet jack, pump truck
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial) A Palestinian.
palm tree justice etymology According to the Chambers Dictionary (Edinburgh: Chambers Harrap, 1998) the phrase is “from the old Arabic or Jewish idea of a wise man dispensing justice under a palm tree.” Thus: “And she dwelt under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in mount Ephraim: and the children of Israel came up to her for judgment.” (Judges 4:5)
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (legal, pejorative) A pragmatic approach to justice that is entirely discretionary and transcends legal rights or precedent, enabling the court to make such order as it thinks fair and just in the circumstances of the case.
    • 1965, National Provincial Bank v. Hastings Car Mart, [1965] 8. W.L.R. 1 at p. 11, per Lord Hodson: … vary agreed or established rights to property in an endeavor to achieve a kind of palm tree justice
palone Alternative forms: polony etymology Of uncertain origin; common in Polari slang but with no clear source. pronunciation
  • (UK) /pəˈləʊni/, /pəˈləʊn/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Polari and other slang) A young woman, a girl.
    • 1938, Graham Greene, Brighton Rock: ‘I don't need a razor with a polony. If you want to know what it is, it's a bottle.’
    • 1944, Journal of the Gypsy Lore Society, volume 23-4: To nomads the road is the ‘drag,’ a man a ‘homey,’ a woman a ‘palone,’ a fair a ‘gaff,’ and a shop a ‘lolly’ (curtailed rhyming slang: lollipop = shop), but English Gypsies still use drom, mush, manushi, weggorus, and budiga.
palooka {{wikipedia}} etymology unknown from the Polish surname Paluka, or a variant of Polack.“[ Palooka]”, [ World Wide Words], Michael Quinion Used in the US since the 1920s, originally primarily of boxers. Popularized by Jack Conway of ,''Esquire,'' September 1936{{w|H. L. Mencken}}, 1945 supplement to ''{{w|The American Language}},'' reviewed in [,9171,792388,00.html Books: Alphabet Soup], ''TIME,'' Monday, Aug. 27, 1945 who also popularized baloney and bimbo. Further popularized by Ham Fisher in his comic strip Joe Palooka, about a boxer (published in newspapers since 1930, particularly popular in 1940s).''Cassell’s Dictionary Of Slang.'' Jonathon Green. Cassel & Co., 1998. ISBN: 0-304-35167-9
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US slang) A stupid, oafish or clumsy person.
  2. (US, boxing, bridge and similar ventures) Someone incompetent or untalented in the specified area.
    • 1923, Lincoln Star, Nebraska, March 1923: But against some palooka who had been press agented into greatness and into the form of a Dempsey menace — that would pack any outdoor arena.
etymology 1 From xno paralisie, parleisie et al., from the accusative form of Latin paralysis, from Ancient Greek παράλυσις 〈parálysis〉, from παραλύειν 〈paralýein〉, from παρά 〈pará〉 + λύειν 〈lýein〉. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpɔːlzi/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (pathology) Complete or partial muscle paralysis of a body part, often accompanied by a loss of feeling and uncontrolled body movements such as shaking.
Synonyms: paralysis
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To paralyse, either completely or partially.
    • 1831, , , To The Public In the month of August, I issued proposals for publishing "THE LIBERATOR" in Washington city; but the enterprise, though hailed in different sections of the country, was palsied by public indifference.
etymology 2 From pals + y. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpælzi/
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (colloquial) Chummy, friendly.
  • plays
  • splay
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang) Very friendly, especially in an excessive or artificial way. She's gotten palsy-walsy with her in-laws lately.
Synonyms: chummy
pan {{Wikipedia}} pronunciation
  • /pæn/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 From Old English panne, from Proto-Germanic *pannōn. Cognate with Dutch pan, German Pfanne.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A wide, flat receptacle used around the house, especially for cooking
  2. The contents of such a receptacle
  3. A cylindrical receptacle about as tall as it is wide, with one long handle, usually made of metal, used for cooking in the home
  4. (Ireland) A deep plastic receptacle, used for washing or food preparation. A basin.
  5. A wide receptacle in which gold grains are separated from gravel by washing the contents with water
  6. (geography) a specific type of lake, natural depression or basin. They are sometimes associated with desert areas
  7. Strong adverse criticism
  8. A loaf of bread
  9. The base part of a toilet, consisting of a bowl and a footing
  10. (slang) A human face, a mug.
    • 1953, Raymond Chandler, The Long Goodbye, Penguin 2010, p. 103: This was the kind of operator who would tell you to be there at nine sharp and if you weren't sitting quietly with a pleased smile on your pan when he floated in two hours later on a double Gibson, he would have a paroxysm of outraged executive ability […].
  11. (roofing) The bottom flat part of a roofing panel that is between the rib of the panel
  12. A closed vessel for boil or evaporating as part of manufacture; a vacuum pan.
  13. The part of a flintlock that holds the priming.
  14. The skull, considered as a vessel containing the brain; the brain-pan. {{rfquotek}}
  15. (carpentry) A recess, or bed, for the leaf of a hinge.
  16. The hard stratum of earth that lies below the soil; hardpan.
Synonyms: (flat receptacle): frying pan, skillet, cookie sheet, (tall receptacle): saucepan
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To wash in a pan (of earth, sand etc. when searching for gold).
    • General Sherman We … witnessed the process of cleaning up and panning out, which is the last process of separating the pure gold from the fine dirt and black sand.
  2. (transitive) To disparage; to belittle; to put down; to criticise severely.
    • 2013, Catwoman (film), English Wikipedia: Catwoman was heavily panned by critics and holds a 9% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 179 reviews with the consensus stating: "Halle Berry is the lone bright spot, but even she can't save this laughable action thriller".
  3. (intransitive) With "out" (to pan out), to turn out well; to be successful.
  4. (transitive, informal, of a contest) To beat one's opposition convincingly.
coordinate terms:
  • (wash in mining) sluice
etymology 2 From a clipped form of panorama.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. to turn horizontal (of a camera etc.)
  2. (intransitive, photography) to move the camera lens angle while continuing to expose the film, enabling a contiguous view and enrichment of context. In still-photography large-group portraits the film usually remains on a horizontal fixed plane as the lens and/or the film holder moves to expose the film laterally. The resulting image may extend a short distance laterally or as great as 360 degrees from the point where the film first began to be exposed.
  3. (audio) To spread a sound signal into a new stereo or multichannel sound field, typically giving the impression that it is moving across the sound stage.
coordinate terms:
  • (of a camera) tilt, cant
etymology 3
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. alternative form of paan
etymology 4 Compare French pan, Latin {{lena}} pannus.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To join or fit together; to unite. {{rfquotek}}
etymology 5 Old English. See pane.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A part; a portion.
  2. (fortifications) The distance comprised between the angle of the epaule and the flanked angle.
  3. A leaf of gold or silver.
etymology 6 From pansexual by shortening.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang) Pansexual.
    • 2012, Anna Waugh, "Texas got a pansexual legislator", Dallas Voice, Volume 29, Issue 33, 28 December 2012, page 9: When she publicly acknowledged that she is pan, it educated citizens near and far on what that sexuality meant and the importance of being proud of who you are.
    • 2013, Alejandra Rodriguez, "Isn't That Bisexual?", Outwrite, Fall 2013, page 7: Another anonymous pansexual disclosed, "Sometimes I feel really left out because I'm pan. {{…}}
    • 2013, Megan Hertner, "Understanding Gender and Sexuality", Grapevine (Huron University College), December 2013, page 19: A similar experience is shared by individuals who identify their sexuality as pan, bi or queer.
    • {{seemoreCites}}
  • nap
  • NPA
  • PNA
panda {{wikipedia}} etymology From French panda, apparently from a local language in Nepal. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpandə/
  • (US) /ˈpændə/
  • {{audio}}
  • (non-rhotic accents) {{homophones}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (now rare without qualifying word) The red panda, a small raccoon-like animal, Ailurus fulgens of northeast Asia with reddish fur and a long, ringed tail. {{defdate}}
  2. The giant panda – a black and white bear-like animal, Ailuropoda melanoleuca from the mountain of China. {{defdate}}
  3. (UK, colloquial) A police car. {{defdate}}
Synonyms: (bear-like animal) giant panda, mottled bear, panda bear, (raccoon-like animal) lesser panda, red panda
panda bear
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial) A panda.
panda hugger
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A Western political activist or official who supports Communist Chinese policies.
    • "It is the most outrageous mistake by White House personnel I have ever seen," one administration official said. "She used to be at [the U.S. Trade Representative's Office] in charge of getting China into the [World Trade Organization], so she is a perfect panda hugger."
pandamonium etymology {{blend}}.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (humorous) Furor caused by or involving panda.
    • 1972, "Pandas settled in National Zoo", Lodi News-Sentinel, 21 April 1972: First Lady Pat Nixon, who received them on behalf of all Americans, said "Thank you so much for this gift of pandas for children of all ages, including me. I'm sure pandamonium will break out."
    • 1987, Douglas Martin, "About New York; Year of the Panda Is Lengthened By a Few Days", The New York Times, 4 November 1987: But Sunday was the last day of the pandas' six-month visit and the "pandamonium" was supposed to be over.
    • 1988, Scott R. Robinson, "Chinese cooking is an art", The Bryan Times, 16 August 1988: Ever since it was known that the Toledo Zoo would be exhibiting a pair of the endangered giant pandas, a state of "pandamonium" has existed in this part of Ohio.
    • {{seemoreCites}}
etymology 1
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A fulling mill.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (Ireland, informal) mashed potatoes
etymology 2
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To strike on the palm of the hand with a strap as a school punishment.
    • 1917, James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man Father Dolan came in today and pandied me because I was not writing my theme.
Panglossian {{was wotd}} etymology From Dr. , a character in ’s . pronunciation
  • (GenAm) /pænˈɡlɑsiən/, /pænˈɡlɔsiən/
  • (RP) /pænˈɡlɒsɪən/
  • {{hyphenation}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (pejorative) Naively or unreasonably optimistic. Though he took a Panglossian view of the world in his youth, he became jaded as he grew older.
  2. (pejorative) Of or relating to the view that this is the best of all possible worlds.
Synonyms: See also
Panhead etymology pan + head, a punning reference to the band's name.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) A fan of the American Christian rock band Skillet (band).
    • 2009, Athalia Nakula, "Skillet: Awake and Alive", Campus Circle, Volume 19, Issue 40, 21 October 2009 - 27 October 2009, page 18: With the kick-off of Skillet's 52-city Awake and Alive tour, it is evident that they won't have difficulty find an American following, as Panheads (a moniker for Skillet fans) across the nation are turning up by the hordes.
    • 2014, Mark Craig, Rise review, Engage, Winter 2014, page 28: This is Skillet doing what Skillet does. If that does it for you, you've probably already got this; if not, it's unlike to win you over to joining the Panheads.
    • 2014, Trevor Freeze, "Skillet's Heart: Reaching the 'Unreachables'", The Morung Express, Volume 9, Issue 93, 6 April 2014, page 7: When they talk about crossover bands–those who have strong fan bases in both the secular and Christian worlds–none may be more popular than Skillet and its dedicated "Panheads."
    • {{seemoreCites}}
pan-loafy Alternative forms: pan loafy, panloafy etymology Scottish colloquial. From pan-loaf - more expensive than ordinary bread.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (colloquial) Posh, pretentious or stuck-up
    • 1993: K Stephen, Proud to be British? in soc.culture.british Perhaps it is a class thing. Pan loafy people can also be very stuffy and toffee nosed and hence arrogant.
    • 1999: Muttley, Life's not worth it in The Central belt is becoming more weedjie. Edinburgh is still pretty pan-loafy. Fifer is bools-in-the-mooth.
    • 2005: Eve McLaughlin, Re GROS a brilliant service in soc.genealogy.britain >What is a scots lol? I think it could be a panloafy way of saying loyal, instead of leal.?
verb: {{head}}
  1. present participle of pan
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The act of one who pans, as for gold.
  2. Material that has been panned.
    • Geological Survey Professional Paper (volumes 265-270, page 122) A trace of metazeunerite was identified in pannings from the dump of the upper of the two adits.
  3. (audio) The act by which a sound is panned. The new console supports pannings and fades.
  4. (informal) Thorough criticism. The director's films had received pannings from critics.
pansified etymology From pansy.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (colloquial) Overly adorned; effeminate; affected.
pansy {{wikipedia}} etymology From the French pensée, as the plant resembles someone that is in deep thought, with a lowered head.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A cultivate flower plant, derived by hybridization within species Viola tricolor.
  2. A deep purple colour, like that of the pansy. {{color panel}}
  3. (derogatory, colloquial, dated) A male homosexual, especially one who is effeminate.
  4. (derogatory, colloquial) A timid, weak man or boy; a wuss.
Synonyms: (timid man or boy) mama's boy, nancy boy, sissy
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Wimpy; spineless; feeble.
  2. Of a deep purple colour, like that of the pansy.
pantech etymology Shortening.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (UK, informal) A pantechnicon; a large removal van.
panto pronunciation
  • (UK) /pæn.təʊ/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (British, informal) Short form of pantomime
  2. (rail transport, informal) Short form of pantograph
  • on tap
pants pronunciation
  • (UK) /pænts/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 Shortened from pantaloons.
noun: {{en-plural noun}}
  1. (plural only, chiefly North America, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa) An outer garment worn by men and women that covers the body from the waist downwards, covering each leg separately, usually as far as the ankle; trousers. {{defdate}}
    • 1933, , Rabble in Arms, 1996, page 220: “But they cover the legs,” Joseph explained. “That is the only reason my people wear pants: to cover the legs in the winter, or when traveling through rough country, full of thorns. In warm weather, or in open country, pants are unnecessary, uncomfortable, and foolish.”
    • 1989, , , Penguin (2006), page 427: Then he gave me a last desperate push and I tripped over the shorts caught around my ankles and fell down. I tried to pull my pants up with my boxing gloves but without success.…In those days nobody wore underpants and I was bare-arsed and fancy free in front of everyone.
    • 2010, Ronald C. Eng (editor), Mountaineering: The Freedom of the Hills, 8th Edition, The Mountaineers Books, US, page 24: Look for pants with reinforced seats and knees and full-length side zippers that make it possible to put the pants on while you are wearing boots, crampons, skis, or snowshoes.
    • 2005, , , page 12: I rolled up the legs of the pants, then I went back into the trees.
    • {{quote-news}}
  2. (plural only, chiefly UK) An undergarment worn by men or women that covers the genitals and often the buttocks and the neighbouring parts of the body; underpants. {{defdate}}
    • 1939, Raymond Chandler, The Big Sleep, Penguin 2011, p. 39: I decided to pass up her underclothes, not from feelings of delicacy, but because I couldn't see myself putting her pants on and snapping her brassière.
    • 1976, Nathan H. Azrin, Richard M. Foxx, Toilet Training in Less Than a Day, 1988, page 127: Big girls get candy for dry pants.
    • 1984, Martin Amis, Money, Vintage (2005), page 183: As she bent over the intercom the little skirt went peek-a-boo and you could see white pants cupping her buttocks like a bra.
  3. (fashion) plural of pant
  4. (UK, slang) rubbish; something worthless You're talking pants! The film was a load (or pile) of pants.
Synonyms: (outer garment that covers the body from the waist downwards) breeks, britches, hosen, slacks, strides, trousers, (undergarment that covers the genitals and often neighbouring body parts) drawers, underpants, underwear (for men) boxers, boxer shorts, BVD's, ginch, gitch, gonch, gotch, jockeys, jockey shorts, shorts, skivvies, undershorts (for women) underpants, knickers, panties
  • (outer garment that covers the body from the waist downwards) corduroys/cords, jeans
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. To pull someone’s pants down; to forcibly remove someone’s pants.
    • 1948, University of California, Carolina Quarterly, page 47: Keith Gerber has been pantsed twice already this summer by Lannie and Cling, and so his face is more resolved, the fear tempered by the fact that he understands these things to be inevitable.
    • 1980, William Hogan, The Quartzsite Trip, Atheneum, page 242: [T]he other boys, Stretch Latham and Rod Becker mainly, pantsed him, got his jockey shorts away and threw them onto Hubcap Willie’s roof.
    • 1993, Harold Augenbraum, Ilan Stavans, Growing Up Latino: Memoirs and Stories, page 174: Richard did not stand too close to him, because he was always trying to pants him, and he would have died of shame if he did it tonight, because he knew his BVDs were dirty at the trap door.
Synonyms: (pull someone’s pants down) depants, de-pants, (British) keg
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (British, slang) of inferior quality, rubbish. Your mobile is pants — why don’t you get one like mine?
etymology 2 From the verb pant (from Middle English panten and (hence) the noun pant.)
verb: {{head}}
  1. en-third-person singular of pant
-pants etymology Extracted from fancypants.
suffix: {{en-suffix}}
  1. (informal, usually, pejorative) Used with adjectives ending in -y to form nicknames based on a negative quality of a person.
    • 1986, Babette Cole, Princess Smartypants, Hamish Hamilton, ISBN 0-241-11885-9: [book title]
    • 1999, Eden Robinson, Monkey Beach: A Novel, Abacus, (cited from Houghton Mifflin/Mariner Books, 2002, ISBN 978-0-618-21905-6), p. 91: We used to call her Miss Bossy Pants when she was a kid.
    • 2005, Lauren Myracle, Rhyme with Witches, Amulet Books, ISBN 978-0-8109-9215-3, p. 21: You had to pull one of your stupid disappearing tricks because you were being a pouty-pants.
    • 2012, April 21, Meghan McCarthy, "A Canterlot Wedding - Part 1" [television episode], My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic: Gee, maybe her name should be "Princess Demandy Pants".
    bossypants, fancypants, smarty pants, greedy-pants, pouty pants
  • Usually the adjective must be two syllable long and end in -y, eventually with an interfix if the original adjective is only one syllable.
  • As with fancypants usage has not yet settled as to whether this should be separate, linked with an hyphen as a suffixoid or fused like a normal affix.
pants-shittingly etymology From the phrase shit one's pants.
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (slang, vulgar) In a manner, or to a degree, capable of causing one to soil oneself in fear; terrifyingly.
    • 2009, David Wong, John Dies at the End, Thomas Dunne Books (2009), ISBN 9780312555139, page 41: I convinced myself with every passing peaceful moment that things were getting better, that the worst was over. In that, I was pants-shittingly wrong.
    • 2011, David Sirota, Back to Our Future: How the 1980s Explains the World We Live in Now -- Our Culture, Our Politics, Our Everything, Ballantine Books (2011), ISBN 9780345518781, page 86: These guys literally tear into the house lurching toward the children with their arms maniacally in front of them — a pants-shittingly scary Night of the Living Dead reprisal that was not only hysterically antigovernment in its portrayal, but really not appropriate for any kind of movie marketed to children.
    • 2012, Danny Vittore, Back the F*ck Up!: Wild Animals That Don't Give a Sh*t!, Krause Publications (2012), ISBN 9781440229251, page 85: As a person who is absolutely terrified of snakes, I think I am perfectly positioned to comment on how terrifying king cobras are. The answer is pants-shittingly.
    • {{seemoreCites}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Soiling of the pants (underwear) with urine.
    • 1950, American Psychosomatic Society, Psychosomatic Medicine‎ Masturbation, pant wetting, and pica were infrequent.
    • 2001, Douglas Robinson, Who Translates? King Lear is not only portrayed as doddering, reduced to lip-smacking and pant-wetting, but deprived of coherent speech as well.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal) Involving great fear or hilarity.
    • 2007, Jen Lancaster, Bright Lights, Big Ass I don't appreciate laughing myself into a pant-wetting asthma attack upon witnessing my 6'7", 215-pound spouse screaming like a little girl...
panty etymology Recorded since 1845 in the plural, meaning "drawers for men", a derogatory diminutive of pants (the shortening of pantaloons); meaning "underpants for women or children" first recorded 1908. Alternative forms: pantie (uncommon) pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (obsolete, in the plural) Short trousers for men, or more usually boys. {{defdate}}
  2. (usually, in the plural, or in compounds) An article of clothing worn as underpants by women. {{defdate}}
    • 1952 October 13, Advertisement, , page 13, For, unlike old-fashioned diapers, PLAYTEX Dryper confines all wetness to the panty area; brings your baby a whole new world of comfort plus cleaner, finer protection.
    • 2003, Glamour, Volume 101, Issues 4-6, page number unknown, “One time I was going to run and change before a concert because I realized I had panty lines showing,” says Britta Phillips,….
    • 2011, Dan S. Kennedy, Jason Marrs, No B.S. Price Strategy, page 54, That puts their panty well over 1000% higher priced than the Hanes panty and roughly 300% higher priced than the Victoria′s Secret panty. All three are cotton bikini panties. Not much difference in the actual panty but a huge discrepancy in prices.
  3. (informal, roller derby) A helmet cover.
    • 2010, Alex Cohen, Jennifer Barbee, Down and Derby: The Insider's Guide to Roller Derby, unnumbered page, There is a special play called “Passing the Star” that allows the jammer to remove her helmet panty and hand it over to the pivot.
    • 2010, Pamela Ribon, Going in Circles, [http//|%22helmet+panties%22+-intitle:%22%22+-inauthor:%22%22&hl=en&sa=X&ei=wA3OT6SAMqfFmQX0ws2uCg&redir_esc=y#v=onepage&q=%22helmet%20panty%22|%22helmet%20panties%22%20-intitle%3A%22%22%20-inauthor%3A%22%22&f=false page 200], We′re practicing this strategy right now. Francesca is the Jammer, and she′s supposed to pass me the helmet panty. Bruisey-Q is assisting her, helping her get through the pack by knocking the formidable ass of ThunderSmack out of the way.
One wears a pair of panties (like pant(aloon)s), not a panty. The singular form is used in derived terms, but rarely to refer to a single pair of panties.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (informal, dated, especially of a male person) Weak, timid, effeminate, ineffectual. His rough, burly father was mortified by the lad's pantywaist behavior.
noun: {{wikipedia}} {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, dated) A children's undergarment composed, in part, of panties attached to a waistband.
    • 1929 April 29, "The Altman Sale of Children's Underwear" (display advertisement), The New York Times, p. 16: Lace trimmed panty waists—50 cents.
  2. (pejorative, dated) An ineffectual, weak, or timid person, especially a boy or young man; a sissy.
    • 1943 Jan. 24, Hal Borland, "'Baedekers' for Our Fighters: So you're going abroad, says Uncle Sam," The New York Times, p. SM14: Don't be misled by the British tendency to be soft-spoken and polite. The English language didn't spread across the oceans and over the mountains and jungles and swamps because these people were pantywaists.
pap pronunciation
  • /pæp/
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 Origins unclear. Related to gml pappe, Dutch pap, Old French papa/pape, Latin pappa, Bulgarian папам 〈papam〉 and Serbo-Croatian папати 〈papati〉/papati, among others. The relationships between these words are difficult to reconstruct.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (uncountable) Food in the form of a soft paste, often a porridge, especially as given to very young children. Pap can be made from bread boiled in milk or water.
  2. (uncountable, colloquial) Nonsense.
  3. (South Africa) Porridge. Pap and wors are traditionally eaten at a braai.
  4. (informal, derogatory) support from official patronage Treasury pap
  5. The pulp of fruit. {{rfquotek}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang, South Africa) Spineless, wet, without character.
    • He is so pap and boring.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive, obsolete) To feed with pap. {{rfquotek}}
etymology 2 Middle English pappe, of uncertain origin. Perhaps form Latin papilla; or perhaps compare Old Swedish papp, from Proto-Germanic *pap-, of imitative origin, or from Proto-Indo-European *pap-; Swedish dialectal papp, pappe, Swedish patt, Danish patte, Northern Frisian pap, pape, papke.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (now archaic) A female breast or nipple. {{defdate}}
    • Bible, Luke xi. 27 the paps which thou hast sucked
    • {{RQ:Spenser Faerie Queene}}, II.xii: But th'other rather higher did arise, / And her two lilly paps aloft displayd, / And all, that might his melting hart entise / To her delights, she vnto him bewrayd{{nb...}}.
    • {{RQ:Flr Mntgn Essays}}, Folio Society, 2006, vol.1, p.98: they doe not onely weare jewels at their noses, in their lip and cheekes, and in their toes, but also big wedges of gold through their paps {{transterm}} and buttocks{{nb...}}.
  2. (now rare, archaic) A man's breast. {{defdate}}
    • {{RQ:Flr Mntgn Essays}}, II.13: Adrianus the Emperour made his Physition to marke and take the just compasse of the mortall place about his pap, that so his aime might not faile him, to whom he had given charge to kill him.
  3. A rounded, nipple-like hill or peak. {{rfquotek}}
etymology 3 Shortened form of Pap smear from , American physician.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Pap smear
etymology 4 {{rfe}}
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (South African slang) Flat. I got a puncture and the wheel went pap.
etymology 5 From paparazzo
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (usually, in the passive) Of a paparazzo, to take a surreptitious photograph of (someone, especially a celebrity) without their consent. Look, that pop star’s been papped in her bikini again!
  • app , App
papa {{wikipedia}} etymology C. 17th century, from French papa, probably originally imitative of a child's early efforts at vocalization. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /pəˈpɑː/, /ˈpɑː.pə/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{homophones}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (often, childish) Dad, daddy, father; a familiar or old-fashioned term of address to one’s father.
  2. (informal) A pet name for one's grandfather.
  3. A parish priest in the Greek Orthodox Church. {{rfquotek}}
  4. The letter P in the ICAO spelling alphabet.
related terms: {{rel3}}
  • APAP
Pape etymology Shortened from Papist. pronunciation
  • (UK) /peɪp/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (chiefly, Scotland, Ireland, pejorative) A Roman Catholic; a Papist.
    • 2008, James Kelman, Kieron Smith, Boy, Penguin 2009, page 54: If it was just Papes, if they were going to fight ye, ye would just fight them back.
paper {{wikipedia}} etymology From xno paper, from Old French papier, from Latin papȳrus, from Ancient Greek πάπυρος 〈pápyros〉. pronunciation
  • (RP) /ˈpeɪpə/
  • (US) /ˈpeɪpɚ/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A sheet material used for writing on or print on (or as a non-waterproof container), usually made by draining cellulose fibres from a suspension in water.
    • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, 10 , [ The Mirror and the Lamp] , “He looked round the poor room, at the distempered walls, and the bad engravings in meretricious frames, the crinkly paper and wax flowers on the chiffonier; and he thought of a room like Father Bryan's, with panelling, with cut glass, with tulips in silver pots, such a room as he had hoped to have for his own.”
  2. A newspaper or anything used as such (such as a newsletter or listing magazine).
    • {{RQ:Mrxl SqrsDghtr}} "I don't want to spoil any comparison you are going to make," said Jim, "but I was at Winchester and New College." ¶ "That will do," said Mackenzie. "I was dragged up at the workhouse school till I was twelve. Then I ran away and sold papers in the streets, and anything else that I could pick up a few coppers by—except steal.{{nb...}}."
    • 1935, [ George Goodchild] , Death on the Centre Court, 1 , ““Anthea hasn't a notion in her head but to vamp a lot of silly mugwumps. She's set her heart on that tennis bloke…whom the papers are making such a fuss about.””
  3. (uncountable) Wallpaper.
    • {{RQ:BLwnds TLdgr}} There was a neat hat-and-umbrella stand, and the stranger's weary feet fell soft on a good, serviceable dark-red drugget, which matched in colour the flock-paper on the walls.
  4. (uncountable) Wrapping paper.
  5. A written document, generally shorter than a book (white paper, term paper), in particular one written for the Government.
  6. A written document that reports scientific or academic research and is usually subjected to peer review before publication in a scientific journal or in the proceedings of a scientific or academic meeting (such as a conference, a workshop or a symposium).
  7. A scholastic essay.
  8. (slang) Money.
  9. (New Zealand) A university course.
  10. A paper packet containing a quantity of items. examplea paper of pins, tacks, opium, &c.
  11. A medicinal preparation spread upon paper, intended for external application. examplecantharides paper
Synonyms: (medium used in writing) bookfell
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Made of paper. examplepaper bag;  paper plane
    • {{RQ:WBsnt IvryGt}} At twilight in the summer…the mice come out. They…eat the luncheon crumbs. Mr. Checkly, for instance, always brought his dinner in a paper parcel in his coat-tail pocket, and ate it when so disposed, sprinkling crumbs lavishly…on the floor.
  2. Insubstantial. examplepaper tiger;  paper gangster
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To apply paper to. to paper the hallway walls
  2. (transitive) To document; to memorialize. After they reached an agreement, their staffs papered it up.
  3. (transitive) To fill a theatre or other paid event with complimentary seats. As the event has not sold well, we'll need to paper the house.
  • {{rank}}
paper clip {{wikipedia}} Alternative forms: paperclip
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A small, folded, wire or plastic device used to hold sheets of paper together.
paperhanger etymology From paper + hanger. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpeɪpəhaŋə/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Someone who puts wallpaper on wall.
    • 1942, Elliot Paul, The Last Time I Saw Paris, Sickle Moon 2001, p. 61: No one in the street was aware than an Austrian paperhanger named Shickelgruber, and calling himself Hitler, had been arrested in Munich and thrown into jail.
  2. (slang) A con man who passes bad cheque or counterfeit paper money; a forger, a con artist.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The trade of hanging wallpaper on wall.
  2. (slang) The illegal activities of a paperhanger; counterfeit fraud.
paper house
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang, dated) An audience composed of people who have come in on free pass.
paper hunting
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (firearms, informal, sometimes derogatory) target shooting
paperweight {{wikipedia}} etymology paper + weight
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A small, decorative, somewhat weighty object placed on one or more pieces of paper to keep them from fluttering away.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
  2. Any object for this purpose. John used his coffee mug as a paperweight.
  3. (slang) An otherwise useless piece of equipment.
paperwork etymology paper + work.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A clerical task or set of tasks involving routine written work; busy work; red tape.
  2. (informal) Excessive, intricate or meticulous work with documents in an unnecessary and incidental way to more important tasks.
Synonyms: administrativia, administrivia, busy work, red tape
papish etymology From alteration of papist, popish. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpeɪpɪʃ/
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (now Scotland, Ireland, chiefly pejorative) Roman Catholic.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (now Scotland, Ireland, chiefly pejorative) A Roman Catholic.
    • 1749, Henry Fielding, Tom Jones, Folio Society 1973, p. 442: ‘But how can he have any right to make us papishes?’ says the landlord.
  • happis
papism etymology From papist
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (often derogatory) the Roman Catholic faith
Synonyms: papistry
papist etymology From Middle French papiste, from Latin papa. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpeɪp.ɪst/
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (religious slur, Christianity) Used by some Protestant in referring to Roman Catholic, whose loyalties are seen to be with the papacy in Rome.
Synonyms: Romist
related terms:
  • papa-
  • papacy
  • papal
  • papistical
  • papistic
  • papism
  • papistry
  • pope
  • popish
papistic Alternative forms: papistical etymology from papist
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (derogatory) being of or connected with the Roman Catholic faith
    • T. Warton The old papistic worship.
Synonyms: papistical
papistical etymology From ll papisticus + -al. pronunciation
  • (UK) /pəˈpɪstɪk(ə)l/
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (derogatory) Being of or connected with the Roman Catholic faith.
Synonyms: papistic
papistry etymology from papist
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (derogatory) The Roman Catholic faith.
Synonyms: papism
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (informal) one's grandfather Pappy told me about his life.
pappy pronunciation
  • /pæpi/
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 pap + y
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. Like pap; soft; mushy.
etymology 2 {{rfe}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial, regional) father
  2. (colloquial, regional) grandfather
para {{wikipedia}}
etymology 1 From Serbo-Croatian pàra/па̀ра 〈pàra〉, from Ottoman Turkish پاره 〈pạrh〉, from Persian پاره 〈pạrh〉. pronunciation
  • (UK) {{enPR}}, /ˈpɑːrə/
  • (US) {{enPR}}, /ˈpɑːrə/
noun: {{en-noun}} {{wikipedia}}
  1. Formerly, a subunit of currency in several countries in the Ottoman/Turkish and Yugoslav regions.
etymology 2 The second part of words such as primipara and multipara pronunciation {{rfp}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (medicine) A woman who has had a certain number of pregnancies, indicated by the number prepend to this word.
related terms:
  • multipara
  • nullipara
  • primipara
etymology 3 Shortened from paragraph pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /ˈpærə/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A paragraph.
etymology 4 Shortened from paratrooper pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /ˈpærə/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A paratrooper.
etymology 5 Shortened from paralytic pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /ˈpærə/
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (UK, Australia, slang) very drunk
  • AARP, apar
parachute panties
noun: {{en-plural noun}}
  1. (US, informal) Very large panties.
paradox {{wikipedia}} etymology From Middle French paradoxe <Latin paradoxum, from Ancient Greek παράδοξος 〈parádoxos〉. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpaɹədɒks/
  • (US) /ˈpɛɹədɑks/, /ˈpæɹədɑks/
  • {{audio}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A self-contradictory statement, which can only be true if it is false, and vice versa.{{jump}} "This sentence is false" is a paradox.
  2. A counterintuitive conclusion or outcome.{{jump}} It is an interesting paradox that drinking a lot of water can often make you feel thirsty.
    • 1983 May 21, Ronald Reagan, "", The most fundamental paradox is that if we're never to use force, we must be prepared to use it and to use it successfully.
  3. A claim that two apparently contradictory ideas are true.{{jump}} Not having a fashion is a fashion; that's a paradox.
    • 1941, The Pirates of Penzance , “How quaint the ways of Paradox! / At common sense she gaily mocks! / Though counting in the usual way years twenty-one I've been alive, / Yet reck'ning by my natal day, / Yet reck'ning by my natal day, / I am a little boy of five!”
  4. A person or thing having contradictory properties.{{jump}} He is a paradox; you would not expect him in that political party.
  5. An unanswerable question or difficult puzzle, particularly one which leads to a deeper truth. {{jump}}
  6. (obsolete) A statement which is difficult to believe, or which goes against general belief.
    • Act III , “Ay, truly; for the power of beauty will sooner / transform honesty from what it is to a bawd than the / force of honesty can translate beauty into his / likeness: this was sometime a paradox, but now the / time gives it proof. ”
    • 1615, Ralph Hamor, A True Discourse of the Present State of Virginia, Richmond 1957, p. 3 they contended to make that Maxim, that there is no faith to be held with Infidels, a meere and absurd Paradox [...].
  7. (uncountable) The use of counterintuitive or contradictory statements (paradoxes) in speech or writing.
  8. (uncountable, philosophy) A state in which one is logically compelled to contradict oneself.
  9. (uncountable, psychotherapy) The practice of giving instructions that are opposed to the therapist's actual intent, with the intention that the client will disobey or be unable to obey.{{jump}}
  • {{jump}} A statement which contradicts itself in this fashion is a paradox; two statements which contradict each other are an antinomy.
  • {{jump}} This use may be considered incorrect or inexact.
  • {{jump}} This use may be considered incorrect or inexact.
    • ENIGMA, PARADOX, RIDDLE, Centennial ed. , “An enigma, therefore, is not a paradox, but a paradox, not being intelligible, may seem like an enigma. ”, **:
Synonyms: {{jump}} shocker (informal), {{jump}} juxtaposition, contradiction, {{jump}} puzzle, quandary, riddle, enigma, koan, {{jump}} reverse psychology
paradoxist etymology paradox + ist
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (dated, derogatory) One who holds incorrect or eccentric beliefs; a bad scientist; a crank.
    • 1896, Richard Anthony Proctor, Myths and Marvels of Astronomy (page 325) This was a noble achievement on the part of our paradoxist. At one stroke it established his theory of the weather, and promised to ensure him text-book immortality as one of the observers of Vulcan.
    • 1916, William Archer, To neutral peace-lovers: a plea for patience (page 16) But these paradoxists and grumblers were a quite infinitesimal minority. The common sense and sound instinct of Britain and of the Empire realised that here was an issue like scarcely another in history — a clear issue of right and wrong…
  2. A participant in the art movement of paradoxism.
paramilitary {{wikipedia}} etymology para + military pronunciation
  • (US) /ˌpɛɹəˈmɪlɪˌtɛɹi/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A group of civilian trained and organized in a military fashion, but which do not represent the formal forces of a sovereign power.
  2. (colloquial) A member of a paramilitary group.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. relating to a paramilitary
paramour Alternative forms: paramours etymology From Old French par amor. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpa.ɹə.mʊə/, /ˈpa.ɹə.mɔː/
  • (US) /ˈpæɹəmɔɹ/ (non-Mary-marry-merry) {{audio}} (Mary-marry-merry) {{audio}}
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (obsolete, of loving, etc.) Passionately, out of sexual desire; devotedly. {{defdate}}
    • Chaucer For par amour I loved her first ere thou.
    • {{RQ:Mlry MrtDrthr}}: Is this trouthe said Palomydes / Thenne shall we hastely here of sire Tristram / And as for to say that I loue la Beale Isoud peramours I dare make good that I doo / and that she hath my seruyse aboue alle other ladyes / and shalle haue the terme of my lyf
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. An illicit lover, either male or female.
    • {{rfdate}}, Macaulay: The seducer appeared with dauntless front, accompanied by his paramour.
Synonyms: leman, mistress
parasite {{wikipedia}} etymology From Middle French parasite, from Latin parasitus, from Ancient Greek παράσιτος 〈parásitos〉, from noun use of adjective meaning "feeding beside", from παρά 〈pará〉 + σῖτος 〈sîtos〉. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpaɹəsʌɪt/
  • (US) /ˈpæɹəˌsaɪt/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (pejorative) A person who lives on other people's efforts or expense and gives little or nothing back. {{defdate}}
  2. (biology) an organism that lives on or in another organism, deriving benefit from living on or in that other organism, while not contributing towards that other organism sufficiently to cover the cost to that other organism.
    • {{quote-magazine}}
    Lice, fleas, ticks and mites are widely spread parasites.
  3. (literary, poetic) A climbing plant which is supported by a wall, trellis etc. {{defdate}}
    • 1813, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Queen Mab, I: Her golden tresses shade / The bosom’s stainless pride, / Curling like tendrils of the parasite / Around a marble column.
  • commensal (doing no noticeable harm)
  • mutualist or sometimes symbiote (beneficial)
related terms:
  • parasitise, parasitize
  • parasitic, parasitical
  • parasiticide
  • parasitism
  • parasitology
  • parasite drag
  • aspirate, pastiera
parch etymology Origin unknown. pronunciation
  • {{audio}}
  • (UK) /pɑːtʃ/ {{rhymes}}
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To burn the surface of, to scorch. The sun today could parch cement.
  2. (transitive) To roast, as dry grain.
    • Bible, Leviticus xxiii. 14 Ye shall eat neither bread, nor parched corn.
  3. (transitive) To dry to extremity; to shrivel with heat. The patient's mouth is parched from fever.
  4. (transitive, colloquial) To make thirsty. We're parched, hon. Could you send up an ale from the cooler?
  5. (transitive, archaic) To boil something slowly (Still used in Lancashire in , a type of mushy peas).
  6. (intransitive) To become superficially burnt; be become sunburned. The locals watched, amused, as the tourists parched in the sun, having neglected to apply sunscreen or bring water.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The condition of being parched.
    • 1982, TC Boyle, Water Music, Penguin 2006, p. 64: Yet here he is, not at the head, but somewhere toward the rear of the serpentine queue wending its way through all this parch […].
pard pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
etymology 1 From Middle English parde, from Latin pardus, from Ancient Greek πάρδος 〈párdos〉
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A leopard; a panther.
etymology 2 From pardner, by shortening.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (colloquial) Chap; fellow; Used as a friendly appellation
pardon etymology From Middle English pardonen from Old French pardoner (modern French pardonner), from vl *perdonare, from per- + donare, a loan-translation of a gem word represented by frk *firgeban, from fir- + geban. Akin to Old High German fargeban, firgeban, Old English forġiefan. More at forgive. pronunciation
  • (Canada) /ˈpɑrdən/
  • (US) /ˈpɑɹɾn̩/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. Forgiveness for an offence.
    • 1748: Samuel Richardson, Clarissa a step, that could not be taken with the least hope of ever obtaining pardon from or reconciliation with any of my friends;
  2. (legal) An order that release a convict criminal without further punishment, prevents future punishment, or (in some jurisdictions) remove an offence from a person's criminal record, as if it had never been committed.
    • 1974: President Gerald Ford, Proclamation 4311 I... have granted and by these presents do grant a full, free, and absolute pardon unto Richard Nixon for all offenses against the United States ...
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To forgive.
    • 1599: William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar (play) O, pardon me, thou bleeding piece of earth, / That I am meek and gentle with these butchers!
    • 1815: Jane Austen, Emma I hope you will not find he has outstepped the truth more than may be pardoned, in consideration of the motive.
    • 1898, Winston Churchill (novelist) , The Celebrity, 1 , “In the old days, to my commonplace and unobserving mind, he gave no evidences of genius whatsoever. He never read me any of his manuscripts,&nbsp;[&hellip;], and therefore my lack of detection of his promise may in some degree be pardoned.”
  2. (transitive) To refrain from exacting as a penalty.
    • Shakespeare I pardon thee thy life before thou ask it.
  3. (transitive, legal) To grant an official pardon for a crime; unguilt.
    • 1900, Charles W. Chesnutt, The House Behind the Cedars, Chapter I, The murderer, he recalled, had been tried and sentenced to imprisonment for life, but was pardoned by a merciful governor after serving a year of his sentence.
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. Often used when someone does not understand what another person says. Pardon?, What did you say?, Can you say that again?
Paree etymology Representing the French pronunciation of Paris.
proper noun: {{en-proper noun}}
  1. (humorous) deliberate misspelling of Paris, the capital city of France.
paren etymology Abbreviation of parenthesis.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) A parenthesis bracket used to enclose parenthetical material in text.
park etymology From Middle English park, from Old French parc, from Malayalam parcus, parricus, from frk *parrik, from Proto-Germanic *parrukaz, from Proto-Indo-European *(s)par-. Cognate with Old High German pfarrih, pferrih, Old English pearroc &quot;enclosure&quot;; &gt; modern English paddock, Old Norse parrak. More at parrock, paddock. pronunciation
  • {{enPR}}, /pɑrk/
    • (Australia) [paːk]
    • (New York) [pɒək]
    • (New Zealand) [pɐːk]
    • (UK) [pɑːk]
    • (US) [pɑɹk]
    • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. An area of land set aside for environment preservation and/or informal recreation.
    1. A tract of ground kept in its natural state, about or adjacent to a residence, as for the preservation of game, for walking, riding, or the like.
      • Edmund Waller (1606-1687) While in the park I sing, the listening deer / Attend my passion, and forget to fear.
    2. A piece of ground, in or near a city or town, enclosed and kept for ornament and recreation exampleHyde Park in London;&nbsp; Central Park in New York
      • 1918, W. B. Maxwell, 23 , [ The Mirror and the Lamp] , “If the afternoon was fine they strolled together in the park, very slowly, and with pauses to draw breath wherever the ground sloped upward. The slightest effort made the patient cough.”
      • 1994, Robert Ferro,The Blue Star: I roamed the streets and parks, as far removed from the idea of art and pretense as I could take myself, discovering there the kind of truth I was supposed to be setting down on paper…
    3. An enclosed parcel of land stocked with animals for hunting, which one may have by prescription or royal grant.
    4. (US) A grassy basin surrounded by mountains.
  2. An area used for serious organized purposes.
    1. {{rfc-sense}} A space occupied by the animals, wagons, pontoons, and materials of all kinds, as ammunition, ordnance stores, hospital stores, provisions, etc., when brought together. examplea park of wagons; &nbsp; a park of artillery
    2. A partially enclosed basin in which oyster are grown.
    3. An area zone for a particular (industrial or technological) purpose. examplebusiness park;&nbsp; industrial park;&nbsp; science park
      • {{quote-magazine}}
    4. (soccer) A pitch; the area on which a match is played.
      • {{quote-news}}
  3. (UK) An inventory of matériel. exampleA country's tank park or artillery park.
  4. (Australia, NZ) A space in which to leave a car; a parking space.
    • 2003, “Johnny”, Melbourne Blackout, in Sleazegrinder (editor), Gigs from Hell: True Stories from Rock and Roll′s Frontline, page 174, We got to the 9th Ward and as luck would have it I found a park for my bro′s car right out the front.
    • 2010, Sandy Curtis, Dangerous Deception, Clan Destine Press, Australia, unnumbered page, Once they′d entered the floors of parking spaces, James found a park relatively easily, but Mark had difficulty, and only a swift sprint allowed him to catch up as James walked through the throngs of people in the casino with the determination of a man who didn′t want to be delayed.
    • 2011, Antonia Magee, The Property Diaries: A Story of Buying a House, Finding a Man and Making a Home … All on a Single Income!, John Wiley & Sons Australia, unnumbered page, We finally found a park and walked a few blocks to the building.
  • (a piece of ground in or near a city) building, skyscraper, street
Synonyms: (a piece of ground in or near a city) courtyard, garden, plaza
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (transitive) To bring (something such as a vehicle) to a halt or store in a specified place. You can park the car in front of the house. I parked the drive heads of my hard disk before travelling with my laptop.
  2. (transitive, informal) To defer (a matter) until a later date. Let's park that until next week's meeting.
  3. (transitive) To bring together in a park, or compact body. to park artillery, wagons, automobiles, etc.
  4. (transitive) To enclose in a park, or as in a park.
    • Shakespeare How are we parked, and bounded in a pale.
  5. (transitive, baseball) To hit a home run, to hit the ball out of the park. He really parked that one.
  6. (intransitive, slang) To engage in romantic or sexual activities inside a nonmoving vehicle. They stopped at a romantic overlook, shut off the engine, and parked.
  7. (transitive, informal, sometimes reflexive) To sit, recline, or put, especially in a manner suggesting an intent to remain for some time. He came in and parked himself in our living room. Park your bags in the hall.
  8. (transitive, finance) To invest money temporarily in an investment instrument considered to relatively free of risk, especially while awaiting other opportunities. We decided to park our money in a safe, stable, low-yield bond fund until market conditions improve.
  9. (Internet) To register a domain name, but make no use of it (See )
  10. (transitive, oyster culture) To enclose in a park, or partially enclosed basin.
  11. (intransitive, dated) To promenade or drive in a park.
  12. (intransitive, dated, of horses) To display style or gait on a park drive.
antonyms: (bring to a halt) unpark
park a tiger
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (South Africa, slang) To vomit.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (British, slang) a park keeper.
  2. (British, slang) a parking or traffic warden.
parking space
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A space in which to park a car or other vehicle.
Synonyms: parking spot, spot
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, neurology, disease) Parkinson’s disease.
Parkinson's disease {{wikipedia}} etymology Named after English physician (1755-1824).
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (neurology, disease) A chronic neurological disorder resulting in lack of control over movement; poor balance and coordination; and similar symptoms.
Synonyms: Parkinson’s (colloquial)
parlance {{was wotd}} etymology From xno parlance, parlaunce, from parler + -ance. pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpɑː.ləns/
  • (US) /ˈpɑɹ.ləns/
  • {{audio}}
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A certain way of speak, of using words, especially when it comes to those with a particular job or interest.
    • “To my childish fancy, it had seemed an imaginary flag-staff, or, in rustic parlance, the "liberty pole" of some former generation …”
    • Letter IX, “We approach the contest, still known in the common parlance of the country, as "the first Pennimite War."”
    • Chapter 22, “The tourist's impression of the country to-day is that of a transported Holland, in which the official language is Dutch and the parlance of the people is "taki-taki."”
  2. (archaic, rare) Speech, discussion or debate.
    • "Peredur the Son of Evrawc", “And without further parlance they fought, …”
Synonyms: jargon
  • carplane
parleyvoo etymology French parlez vous
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (dated, humorous) Someone who speaks a foreign language, especially French
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (intransitive, dated, humorous) To speak a foreign language, especially French.
parlez vous etymology From French parlez-vous français{{NNBS}}.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (humorous) To speak a foreign language, particularly French.
    • 1980, Billy Joel, “Don’t Ask Me Why”, Columbia Records Now your ghosts have gone away… Now you, “parlez vous francais”
  • {{seeCites}}
Synonyms: parleyvoo
parp pronunciation
  • {{rhymes}}
interjection: {{en-interj}}
  1. (informal) Representing the sound of a car horn or breaking wind.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) The sound of a car horn or breaking wind.
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (informal) To talk nonsense.
  2. (informal) To break wind.
  3. (informal) To sound a car horn.
  • appr
parro etymology From paralytic + o.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (slang, colloquial, Australia) Very drunk, intoxicated. I was so parro that I pissed in the sink.
    • {{quote-newsgroup }}
    • {{quote-newsgroup }}
parson's nose
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. The tail of a cooked fowl.
parsonish etymology parson + ish
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (colloquial, derogatory) Like, or befitting, a parson.
{{Webster 1913}}
partay pronunciation
  • (US) /ˌpɑɹˈteɪ/, [ˌpʰɑɹˈtʰeɪ̯]
etymology Alteration of party.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (slang) Party (in the sense of an organised gathering of people for the purpose of dancing and otherwise having fun).
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (slang) party have a party, enjoy oneself
etymology 1 part + er
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal, only, in combination) A work in a specified number of part. The show was a two-parter, but we stopped watching halfway through.
etymology 2 part + er
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. That which parts.
  • prater
partial-birth abortion
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US, legal, colloquial) intact dilation and extraction
{{wikipedia}} The term partial-birth abortion is used primarily in the United States, where the intact dilation and extraction procedure was banned in 2003 by a federal law, the . Opinions on the acceptability of the term vary, and it is sometimes perceived as being a political dysphemism.
particle zoo etymology Suggesting a zoological park with many species on display.
noun: {{en-noun}} {{wikipedia}}
  1. (physics, informal) The extensive list of known elementary particle.
partner in crime
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. A criminal accomplice
  2. (informal) A close associate of another
parts pronunciation
  • {{audio}}
  • /pɑːts/
noun: {{head}}
  1. plural of part
  2. (plural only) intellectual ability or learning He was a man of great parts but little virtue.
  3. (plural only, usually with “these”, colloquial) vicinity, region
    • 1854, Lord Cockburn, Memoir of Thomas Thomson, Scotland Bannatyne Club, page 241: We intend being at Leamington before long, unless some change in the weather should make our stay in these parts more tolerable.
  4. (plural only, euphemistic) The male genitals.
verb: {{head}}
  1. en-third-person singular of part
  • {{rank}}
  • prats
  • sprat
  • strap
  • tarps
  • traps
party {{wikipedia}} {{wikipedia}} pronunciation
  • (UK) /ˈpɑː.ti/
  • (US) /ˈpɑɹ.ti/
  • {{audio}}
  • {{audio}}
  • {{rhymes}}
  • {{hyphenation}}
etymology 1 From xno partie, Old French partie, from Malayalam partita, from Latin partita, feminine of partitus, past participle of partiri; see part.
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (legal) A person or group of people constituting a particular side in a contract or legal action. exampleThe contract requires that the party of the first part pay the fee.
    • Sir John Davies (poet) (c.1569-1626) If the jury found that the party slain was of English race, it had been adjudged felony.
  2. (heading) A person.
    1. (slang, dated) A person; an individual. exampleHe is a queer party.
    2. With to: an accessory, someone who takes part. exampleI can't possibly be a party to that kind of reckless behaviour.
  3. (now rare in general sense) A group of people forming one side in a given dispute, contest etc.
    • 1912, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Tarzan of the Apes, Ch.6: A mile back in the forest the tribe had heard the fierce challenge of the gorilla, and, as was his custom when any danger threatened, Kerchak called his people together, partly for mutual protection against a common enemy, since this gorilla might be but one of a party of several, and also to see that all members of the tribe were accounted for.
  4. A political group considered as a formal whole, united under one specific political platform of issues and campaigning to take part in government. exampleThe green party took 12% of the vote.
    • {{RQ:EHough PrqsPrc}} "A fine man, that Dunwody, yonder," commented the young captain, as they parted, and as he turned to his prisoner. "We'll see him on in Washington some day.…A strong man—a strong one; and a heedless." ¶ "Of what party is he?" she inquired, as though casually.
  5. (military) A discrete detachment of troops, especially for a particular purpose. exampleThe settlers were attacked early next morning by a scouting party.
  6. (heading) A social gathering.
    1. A gathering of usually invited guests for entertainment, fun and socializing. exampleI'm throwing a huge party for my 21st birthday.
    2. A group of people traveling or attending an event together, or participating in the same activity. exampleWe're expecting a large party from the London office.
      • 1898, Winston Churchill (novelist) , The Celebrity, 5 , “We made an odd party before the arrival of the Ten, particularly when the Celebrity dropped in for lunch or dinner.”
    3. A gathering of acquaintances so that one of them may offer items for sale to the rest of them. exampleTupperware party;&emsp; lingerie party
  7. (heading, gaming) Participants.
    1. (online gaming) Active player character organized into a single group.
    2. (video games) Group of characters controlled by the player.
  8. (obsolete) A part or division.
    • {{RQ:Mlry MrtArthr1}}, Bk.II, Ch.xv: And so the moost party of the castel that was falle doune thorugh that dolorous stroke laye vpon Pellam and balyn thre dayes.
Synonyms: (social gathering), bash, do, rave, See also
related terms:
  • part
  • partisan
verb: {{en-verb}}
  1. (intransitive) To celebrate at a party, to have fun, to enjoy oneself. We partied until the early hours.
  2. (intransitive, slang, euphemistic) To take recreational drug.
    • 2004, Daniel Nicholas Shields, Firewoman “Miss, do you party?” the boy asked. “What?” Jennifer asked back. “Do you smoke? I'll get you some cheap. One American dollar equals forty Jamaican dollars. I'll get you as much of the stuff as you need.”
  3. (gaming, online gaming, intransitive) To form a party (with). If you want to beat that monster, you should party with a healer.
  • {{rank}}
etymology 2 From Middle English, from Old French parti, from Latin partītus, past participle of partiri. More at part.
adjective: {{en-adj}}
  1. (obsolete, except in compounds) Divided; in part.
  2. (heraldry) Parted or divided, as in the direction or form of one of the ordinaries. an escutcheon party per pale
adverb: {{en-adv}}
  1. (obsolete) Partly. {{rfquotek}}
  • yrapt
party favor {{was wotd}} pronunciation
  • (US) /pɑɹɾiːˌfejvɹ̩/
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (US) A small gift given to a guest at a party, as a souvenir.
  2. (informal, euphemistic) A narcotic, particularly an amphetamine, to be shared at a gathering.
party in one's mouth
noun: {{en-noun}}
  1. (informal) An exciting combination of flavour.
    • 2007, Isa Chandra Moskowitz, Terry Hope Romero, Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook We couldn't help ourselves here; every component in this salad comes together to create a party in your mouth and therefore deserves a mention.
    • 2004, Cincinnati Magazine (volume 37, number 12, September 2004, page 251) There are plans to expand the sushi menu at the bar; for now the offerings are limited to specialty items such as the party-in-your-mouth creation called the B1020 Roll...
    • 2010, Anthony Bidulka, Date with a Sheesha (page 20) The distinct flavours—sharp, sweet, spicy, and everything in between—began a party in my mouth.

All Languages

Languages and entry counts