Pair Pair (p[^a]r), n. [F. paire, LL. paria, L. paria, pl. of par pair, fr. par, adj., equal. Cf. {Apparel}, {Par} equality, {Peer} an equal.] [1913 Webster] 1. A number of things resembling one another, or belonging together; a set; as, a pair or flight of stairs. ``A pair of beads.'' --Chaucer. --Beau. & Fl. ``Four pair of stairs.'' --Macaulay.

Note: [Now mostly or quite disused.] [1913 Webster]

Two crowns in my pocket, two pair of cards. --Beau. & Fl. [1913 Webster]

2. Two things of a kind, similar in form, suited to each other, and intended to be used together; as, a pair of gloves or stockings; a pair of shoes. [1913 Webster]

3. Two of a sort; a span; a yoke; a couple; a brace; as, a pair of horses; a pair of oxen. [1913 Webster]

4. A married couple; a man and wife. ``A happy pair.'' --Dryden. ``The hapless pair.'' --Milton. [1913 Webster]

5. A single thing, composed of two pieces fitted to each other and used together; as, a pair of scissors; a pair of pants; a pair of tongs; a pair of bellows. [1913 Webster]

6. Two members of opposite parties or opinion, as in a parliamentary body, who mutually agree not to vote on a given question (in order, for example, to allow the members to be absent during the vote without affecting the outcome of the vote), or on issues of a party nature during a specified time; as, there were two pairs on the final vote. [Parliamentary Cant]

Note: A member who is thus paired with one who would have voted oppositely is said to be paired for or paired against a measure, depending on the member's position. [1913 Webster +PJC]

7. (Kinematics) In a mechanism, two elements, or bodies, which are so applied to each other as to mutually constrain relative motion. [1913 Webster]

Note: Pairs are named in accordance with the kind of motion they permit; thus, a journal and its bearing form a {turning pair}, a cylinder and its piston a {sliding pair}, a screw and its nut a {twisting pair}, etc. Any pair in which the constraining contact is along lines or at points only (as a cam and roller acting together), is designated a {higher pair}; any pair having constraining surfaces which fit each other (as a cylindrical pin and eye, a screw and its nut, etc.), is called a {lower pair}. [1913 Webster]

{Pair royal} (pl. {Pairs Royal}) three things of a sort; -- used especially of playing cards in some games, as cribbage; as three kings, three ``eight spots'' etc. Four of a kind are called a double pair royal. ``Something in his face gave me as much pleasure as a pair royal of naturals in my own hand.'' --Goldsmith. ``That great pair royal of adamantine sisters [the Fates].'' --Quarles. [Written corruptly {parial} and {prial}.] [1913 Webster]

Syn: {Pair}, {Flight}, {Set}.

Usage: Originally, pair was not confined to two things, but was applied to any number of equal things (pares), that go together. Ben Jonson speaks of a pair (set) of chessmen; also, he and Lord Bacon speak of a pair (pack) of cards. A ``pair of stairs'' is still in popular use, as well as the later expression, ``flight of stairs.'' [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

(of the same kind or suited to each other), , / , , , / , / ,

Look at other dictionaries:

  • pair — pair …   Dictionnaire des rimes

  • pair — pair, aire (pêr, pê r ) adj. 1°   Égal, semblable, pareil ; ne se dit plus, en ce sens, que dans la locution : sans pair. •   Elles [deux chèvres] avaient la gloire De compter dans leur race, à ce que dit l histoire, L une certaine chèvre au… …   Dictionnaire de la Langue Française d'Émile Littré

  • pair — 1. Used as a collective noun, pair is treated as a plural when it denotes two separate items and as a singular when it denotes a unit: so a pair of gloves, scissors, scales, shoes, trousers, etc. are singular whereas a pair of bachelors, dogs,… …   Modern English usage

  • pair — [per] n. pl. pairs or pair [ME paire < OFr < L paria, neut. pl. of par, equal: see PAR1] 1. two similar or corresponding things joined, associated, or used together [a pair of gloves] 2. a single thing made up of two corresponding parts… …   English World dictionary

  • pair — [peə ǁ per] verb [transitive] 1. COMMERCE if two companies, people, or things are paired, they are put into groups of two because they are connected in some way or will work together: • When the new products were paired, encouraging customer… …   Financial and business terms

  • pair — PAIR, pairi, s.m. Titlu purtat de marii vasali ai regelui în Franţa şi în Anglia în evul mediu. ♦ Membru (pe viaţă) al uneia dintre cele două camere legislative din Franţa între 1815 şi 1848. ♦ Titlu de nobleţe în Marea Britanie, care conferă… …   Dicționar Român

  • Pair — Pair, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Paired}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Pairing}.] 1. To be joined in pairs; to couple; to mate, as for breeding. [1913 Webster] 2. To suit; to fit, as a counterpart. [1913 Webster] My heart was made to fit and pair with thine. Rowe …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pair — 〈[pɛ:r] Adj.; Roulett; bei Zahlen〉 gerade; Ggs impair [frz.] * * * pair [pɛ:ɐ̯ ] <Adj.> [frz. pair < afrz. per < lat. par, ↑ Paar]: (von den Zahlen beim Roulette) gerade. * * * pair   [pɛː …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Pair — 〈[ pɛ:r] m. 6; im alten Frankreich〉 Angehöriger des politisch bevorzugten Hochadels [frz. <lat. paria „Gleiches“] * * * pair [pɛ:ɐ̯ ] <Adj.> [frz. pair < afrz. per < lat. par, ↑ Paar]: (von den Zahlen beim Roulette) gerade. * * *… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Pair — der; s, s <aus gleichbed. fr. pair, eigtl. »(dem König) Ebenbürtiger«, zu pair, vgl. ↑pair> Mitglied des franz. Hochadels …   Das große Fremdwörterbuch

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