Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1200-1300
Language: Old French
Origin: paire, from Latin paria 'equal things', from par; PAR

pair

1 noun
     
pair1 S2 W2 plural pairs or pair [countable]
1

joined together

an object that is made from two similar parts that are joined together
pair of trousers/scissors/glasses etc
two pairs of jeans
a pair of black tights
pair
2

belonging together

two things of the same type that are used together
pair of
a new pair of sandals
pair of hands/eyes/legs etc
She felt as if every pair of eyes in the room was on her.
earrings, £5 a pair
a pair of skis
We have five pairs of free tickets to give away.
3

in pairs

in groups of two:
We worked in pairs for the role-play exercise.
The leaves of the tree are arranged in pairs.
4

two people

two people who are standing or doing something together, or who have some type of connection with each other [↪ couple]:
The pair are looking for sponsorship from local businesses.
pair of
a pair of dancers
! Do not use pair to talk about a husband and wife (or two people in a similar relationship). Use couple: They're such a nice couple (NOT pair).
5

the pair of you/them

British English spoken used when you are angry or annoyed with two people:
Oh, get out, the pair of you.
6

two animals

a) HBA a male and a female animal that come together in order to breed
pair of
a pair of doves
a breeding pair
b) old useDSHTTB two horses that work together
7

I've only got one pair of hands

spoken used to say that you are busy and cannot do any more than you are already doing
8

an extra pair of hands

someone who helps you do something when you are busy:
Having an extra pair of hands during busy periods can take the pressure off.
9

a safe pair of hands

someone you can trust and depend on because they are sensible - used especially in news reports:
Colleagues regard him as a safe pair of hands.

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