Webster 1913 Edition
A number of things resembling one another, or belonging together; a set;
as, a. “A pair of beads.”
pairor flight of stairs
Beau. & Fl.“Four pair of stairs.”
[Now mostly or quite disused.]
Two crowns in my pocket, two
Beau. & Fl.
Two things of a kind, similar in form, suited to each other, and intended to be used together;
pairof gloves or stockings; a
Two of a sort; a span; a yoke; a couple; a brace;
pairof horses; a
A married couple; a man and wife.“A happy pair.”
Dryden.“The hapless pair.”
A single thing, composed of two pieces fitted to each other and used together;
pairof scissors; a
pairof pants; a
pairof tongs; a
In a mechanism, two elements, or bodies, which are so applied to each other as to mutually constrain relative motion.
Pairsare 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
pairin which the constraining contact is along lines or at points only (as a cam and roller acting together), is designated a
higher pair; any
pairhaving constraining surfaces which fit each other (as a cylindrical pin and eye, a screw and its nut, etc.), is called a
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].”
Originally, pair was not confined to two things, but was applied to any number of equal things (pares), that go together.
Ben Jonsonspeaks of a pair (set) of chessmen; also, he and
Lord Baconspeak of a pair (pack) of cards. A “pair of stairs” is still in popular use, as well as the later expression, “flight of stairs.”
imp. & p. p.
p. pr. & vb. n.
To be joined in pairs; to couple; to mate, as for breeding.
To suit; to fit, as a counterpart.
My heart was made to fit and
To pair off. See phrase below.
To pair off,
to separate from a group in pairs or couples;
to agree with one of the opposite party or opinion to abstain from voting on specified questions or issues. See
To unite in couples; to form a pair of; to bring together, as things which belong together, or which complement, or are adapted to one another.
Glossy jet is
pairedwith shining white.
To engage (one’s self) with another of opposite opinions not to vote on a particular question or class of questions.
Webster 1828 Edition
1.Two things of a kind, similar in form, applied to the same purpose,and suited to each other or used together; as a pair of gloves or stockings; a pair of shoes; a pair of oxen or horses.
2.Two of a sort; a couple; a brace; as a pair of nerves; a pair of doves. Luke 2.
1.To suit; to fit; as a counterpart.
My heart was made to fit and pair with thine.
1.To unite as correspondent, or rather to contrast.
Glossy jet is paired with shining white.