—n. 1. two identical, similar, or corresponding things that are matched for use together: a pair of gloves; a pair of earrings. 2. something consisting of or regarded as having two parts or pieces joined together: a pair of scissors; a pair of slacks. 3. two individuals who are similar or in some way associated: a pair of liars; a pair of seal pups. 4. a married, engaged, or dating couple.
5. two mated animals.
6. a span or team: a pair of horses. 7. Govt. a. two members on opposite sides in a deliberative body who for convenience, as to permit absence, arrange together to forgo voting on a given occasion.
b. the arrangement thus made.
8. Cards. a. two playing cards of the same denomination without regard to suit or color.
b. pairs, two card players who are matched together against different contestants.
9. pairs. See pair skating. 10. Also called kinematic pair.Mech. two parts or pieces so connected that they mutually constrain relative motion.
11. Philately. two postage stamps joined together either vertically or horizontally.
12. a set or combination of more than two objects forming a collective whole: a pair of beads.
—v.t. 1. to arrange or designate in pairs or groups of two: She paired dancers for the waltz contest. 2. to form into a pair, as by matching, joining, etc.; match; couple: to pair freshly washed socks. 3. (of animals) to cause to mate.
—v.i. 1. to separate into pairs or groups of two (usu. fol. by off ): to pair off for a procession. 2. to form a pair or pairs.
3. to be a member of a pair.
4. to match with or resemble another.
5. to unite in close association with another, as in a business partnership, friendship, marriage, etc.
6. (of animals) to mate.
7. Govt. (in a deliberative body) to form or arrange a pair.
Pronunciation: (per),[key] —adj. French.noting any even number, esp. in roulette. Compare impair.