cou·​ple | \ ˈkə-pəl How to pronounce couple (audio) ; "couple of" is often ˌkə-plə(v) \

Definition of couple

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : two persons married, engaged, or otherwise romantically paired
b : two persons paired together The people were lined up in couples.
2 : pair, brace needed a couple of bookends
3 : something that joins or links two things together: such as
a : two equal and opposite forces that act along parallel lines
b : a pair of substances that in contact with an electrolyte (see electrolyte sense 1) participate in a transfer of electrons which causes an electric current to flow
4 : an indefinite small number : few a couple of days ago


cou·​ple | \ ˈkə-pəl How to pronounce couple (audio) \
coupled; coupling\ ˈkə-​p(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce couple (audio) \

Definition of couple (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1a : to connect for consideration together
b : to join for combined effect
2a : to fasten together : link
b : to bring (two electric circuits) into such close proximity as to permit mutual influence
3 : to join in marriage or sexual union

intransitive verb

1 : to unite in sexual union
2 : join
3 : to unite chemically



Definition of couple (Entry 3 of 3)

: two also : few used with a a couple drinks

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from couple


coupledom \ ˈkə-​pəl-​dəm How to pronounce couple (audio) \ noun

Is couple an adjective?: Usage Guide


The adjective use of a couple, without of, has been called nonstandard, but it is not. In both British and American English it is standard before a word (such as more or less) indicating degree. a couple more examples of Middle English writing — Charles Barber Its use before an ordinary plural noun is an Americanism, common in speech and in writing that is not meant to be formal or elevated. the first couple chapters are pretty good — E. B. White (letter) still operated a couple wagons for hire — Garrison Keillor It is most frequently used with periods of time a couple weeks and numbers. a couple hundred a couple dozen

Examples of couple in a Sentence

Noun “Are they a couple?” “No, they are just good friends.” Seventeen couples participated in the survey. Verb a device that makes it possible to couple the pieces The coils are loosely coupled. The wire is coupled to the terminal. It took an hour to couple the trailer to the truck.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Today, only a couple of structures remain, including a building that served as the town’s school and church. Dan Fellner, The Arizona Republic, "Best bike trails in southern Utah: How to see Zion, Snow Canyon and more on 2 wheels," 5 May 2021 No lights, no camera, no action, just a couple guys in front of microphones, calling the game by watching TV monitors. Paul Daugherty, The Enquirer, "Doc's Morning Line: Please tell us John Brannen actually did something worthy of dismissal," 4 May 2021 Anna Faris Is Unqualified, the actress opened up to guest star Rachel Bilson (who ironically also dated Pratt's character on a couple episodes of The O.C.) about the emotional turmoil that led up to her divorce. Ineye Komonibo,, "Anna Faris Says She & Chris Pratt Were Trying To “Protect The Image” Of Their Marriage Before They Split," 4 May 2021 The song represents the power of a couple marine-corps brats. Devon Ivie, Vulture, "The Greatest and Ballsiest of Heart, According to Nancy Wilson," 4 May 2021 Scardino won a couple Emmys in her Colbert Report days, and also worked on The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and Mr. Mayor. Darren Franich,, "Girls5Eva review: A solid sitcom that could be more than a nostalgia trip," 3 May 2021 The price for just a couple of doors would be higher. Washington Post, "Synthetic kitchen cabinet doors can bubble or fade. Here’s what you can do.," 3 May 2021 D’Arnaud was hurt on the play and departed after a couple warmup throws. Mark Didtler, ajc, "Grichuk single in 10th, Springer 2 HRs as Jays beat Braves," 2 May 2021 D'Arnaud was hurt on the play and departed after a couple warmup throws. Mark Didtler, Star Tribune, "Grichuk single in 10th, Springer 2 HRs as Jays beat Braves," 1 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The president is also trying to couple his infrastructure plan with a proposal focused on health care, child care, and education — upwards of $4 trillion in investments. Grace Segers, CBS News, "Senate overwhelmingly approves $35 billion bipartisan water infrastructure bill," 30 Apr. 2021 Is this ghostly couple our guide to the proceedings to follow? Justin Chang, Los Angeles Times, "Review: ‘About Endlessness’ is another tragicomic marvel from Roy Andersson," 30 Apr. 2021 To maximize efficiencies, the lab wants to couple its efforts with other endeavors such as desalination and the creation of potable water. Ken Silverstein, Forbes, "Will Nuclear Energy’s No-Carbon Quality Outweigh The Fukushima Accident?," 11 Apr. 2021 When the technology gear changes, the process will shift and people will need to couple with these changes. Spiros Liolis, Forbes, "Solving The Cyber-Resilient Puzzle And Maintaining A Secure Workforce," 19 Mar. 2021 Others may couple up to create new luxury conglomerates, as appears to be the case with Moncler’s Stone Island deal. Carol Ryan, WSJ, "Luxury Brands Will Go Shopping Again," 21 Dec. 2020 More than 30 years later, the power and limitations of Ms. Harris’s instinct to couple insider politics with her lens as a Black woman and first-generation American are on display as Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s running mate. New York Times, "What Kamala Harris Learned About Power at Howard," 14 Oct. 2020 Users will also be able to order from multiple restaurants or couple a food order with the purchase of other items and receive everything within the same delivery. Fortune, "Uber Eats wants to deliver flowers and pet supplies, too," 7 Oct. 2020 In some cases, those few extra days could be a female wallaby’s only chance to couple up. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, "Swamp Wallabies Can Get Pregnant While Pregnant," 2 Mar. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas took couple goals to the next level this weekend. Harper's Bazaar Staff, Harper's BAZAAR, "Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas Wore Coordinating Outfits on a Date Night in Los Angeles," 25 Apr. 2021 All that would be needed is a couple Republican votes in the Senate, and for Trump to sign on — and several conservative senators like Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) got behind the bipartisan bill Thursday afternoon. Ryan Cooper, TheWeek, "One man is standing in the way of coronavirus aid," 3 Dec. 2020 Amid the exquisiteness are just a couple minor missteps. Tony Quiroga, Car and Driver, "2021 Genesis GV80: Car and Driver 10Best," 18 Nov. 2020 All the sales will have great deals on electronics, but in terms of other product categories, each event has a couple different focus areas. Krystin Arneson, CNN Underscored, "Walmart’s Black Friday ‘Deals for Days’ event features some truly incredible bargains," 5 Nov. 2020 On the bright side, quarterback Brandon Peters had a couple nice runs and finished with seven carries for 75 yards. Ryan Ford, Detroit Free Press, "Big Ten football misery index: Replacing Rutgers as the butt of our jokes," 25 Oct. 2020 Lenore has a couple different black cocktail rings—some were vintage and some were Neil Lane as well. Stellene Volandes, Town & Country, "The Jewelry Secrets of Ryan Murphy’s Ratched," 12 Oct. 2020 MC Bravado, a Baltimore rapper, was able to quit his job as a full time teacher to go into music -- and now pays a reasonable amount on healthcare for physicals and a couple minor medications. Steve Knopper, Billboard, "Obamacare Is in Danger Again and Indie Musicians Are On Edge," 6 Oct. 2020 Becca is predictably unhappy with the malevolent super-couple dropping in unannounced. Nick Schager,, "The Boys recap: Dads say the darndest things," 2 Oct. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'couple.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of couple


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a


1924, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for couple

Noun, Verb, and Adjective

Middle English, pair, bond, from Anglo-French cuple, from Latin copula bond, from co- + apere to fasten — more at apt

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about couple

Time Traveler for couple

Time Traveler

The first known use of couple was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Statistics for couple

Last Updated

8 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Couple.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 May. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for couple



English Language Learners Definition of couple

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: two people who are married or who have a romantic or sexual relationship
: two people or things that are together



English Language Learners Definition of couple (Entry 2 of 2)

: to join (two things) together
: to join (something) to something else


cou·​ple | \ ˈkəp-əl How to pronounce couple (audio) \

Kids Definition of couple

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : two people who are married or in a romantic relationship
2 : two people or things paired together Line up in couples.
3 : two things that are of the same kind or that are thought of together It cost a couple of dollars. A couple of strange things happened today.


coupled; coupling

Kids Definition of couple (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to join or link together : connect Workers coupled freight cars.
2 : to join in pairs

Comments on couple

What made you want to look up couple? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Used by Nabokov Quiz

  • image1676440788
  • Choose the best definition or synonym for the word in bold: "There are some eructations that sound like cheers—at least, mine did." Lolita
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!