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noun \ˈpās\

Simple Definition of pace

  • : the speed at which someone or something moves

  • : the speed at which something happens

  • : a single step or the length of a single step

Full Definition of pace

  1. 1 a :  rate of movement; especially :  an established rate of locomotion b :  rate of progress; specifically :  parallel rate of growth or development <supplies kept pace with demand> c :  an example to be emulated; specifically :  first place in a competition <three strokes off the paceTime> d (1) :  rate of performance or delivery :  tempo <a steady pace> <on pace to set a record>; especially :  speed <serves with great pace> <a pace bowler in cricket> (2) :  rhythmic animation :  fluency <writes with color, with zest, and with pace — Amy Loveman>

  2. 2 :  a manner of walking :  tread

  3. 3 a :  step 2a(1) b :  any of various units of distance based on the length of a human step

  4. 4 a plural :  an exhibition or test of skills or capacities <the trainer put the tiger through its paces> b :  gait; especially :  a fast 2-beat gait (as of the horse) in which the legs move in lateral pairs and support the animal alternately on the right and left legs

Examples of pace

  1. We walked at a leisurely pace along the shore.

  2. The pace of the story was slow.

  3. His new album is selling at a blistering pace.

Origin of pace

Middle English pas, from Anglo-French, stride, step, from Latin passus, from pandere to spread — more at fathom

First Known Use: 14th century

Other Weights and Measures Terms




Simple Definition of pace

  • : to walk back and forth across the same space again and again especially because you are nervous

  • : to control or set the speed of (someone or something)

Full Definition of pace


  1. intransitive verb
  2. 1 a :  to walk with often slow or measured tread b :  to move along :  proceed

  3. 2 :  to go at a pace —used especially of a horse

  4. transitive verb
  5. 1 a :  to measure by pacing —often used with off <paced off a 10-yard penalty> b :  to cover at a walk <could hear him pacing the floor>

  6. 2 :  to cover (a course) by pacing —used of a horse

  7. 3 a :  to set or regulate the pace of <taught them how to pace their solos for … impact — Richard Goldstein>; also :  to establish a moderate or steady pace for (oneself) b (1) :  to go before :  precede (2) :  to set an example for :  lead c :  to keep pace with

Examples of pace

  1. When she gets nervous she paces back and forth.

  2. He was pacing and muttering to himself.

  3. She paced the other runners for the first half of the race.

  4. Advertisements are paced so that they are shown more often during peak sales seasons.


First Known Use of pace


Rhymes with pace



preposition pa·ce \ˈpā-(ˌ)sē; ˈpä-(ˌ)chā, -(ˌ)kā\

Definition of pace

  1. :  contrary to the opinion of —usually used as an expression of deference to someone's contrary opinion —usually ital. <easiness is a virtue in grammar, pace old-fashioned grammarians — Philip Howard>

Origin of pace

Latin, abl. of pac-, pax peace, permission — more at pact

First Known Use: 1863

Seen and Heard

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February 8, 2016

to clear from accusation or blame

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