noun, often attributive
\ ˈpak How to pronounce pack (audio) \

Definition of pack

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : a bundle arranged for convenience in carrying especially on the back
b : a group or pile of related objects
c(1) : a number of individual components packaged as a unit a pack of gum
(2) : container
(3) : a compact unitized assembly to perform a specific function
(4) : a stack of magnetic disks in a container for use as a storage device
2a : the contents of a bundle
b : a large amount or number : heap a pack of lies
c : a full set of playing cards
3a : an act or instance of packing
b : a method of packing
4a : a set of persons with a common interest : clique
b : an organized unit (as of Cub Scouts)
5a(1) : a group of domesticated animals trained to hunt or run together
(2) : a group of often predatory animals of the same kind a wolf pack
(3) : a large group of individuals massed together (as in a race)
b : wolf pack
6 : a concentrated or compacted mass (as of snow or ice)
7 : absorbent material (such as gauze pads) used to apply medicine or moisture or to press upon a body part or plug an opening (as to stop bleeding) — see ice pack sense 2
8a : a cosmetic paste for the face
b : an application or treatment of oils or creams for conditioning the scalp and hair
9 : material used in packing


verb (1)
packed; packing; packs

Definition of pack (Entry 2 of 4)

transitive verb

1a : to make into a compact bundle
b : to fill completely fans packed the stadium
c : to fill with packing pack a joint in a pipe
d : to load with a pack pack a mule
e : to put in a protective container goods packed for shipment
2a : to crowd together
b : to increase the density of : compress
3a : to cause or command to go without ceremony packed him off to school
b : to bring to an end : give up used with up or in might pack up the assignment used especially in the phrase pack it in
4 : to gather into tight formation : make a pack of (animals, such as hounds)
5 : to cover or surround with a pack
6a : to transport on foot or on the back of an animal pack a canoe overland
b : to wear or carry as equipment pack a gun
c : to be supplied or equipped with : possess a storm packing hurricane winds
d : to make or be capable of making (an impact) a book that packs a man-sized punch— C. J. Rolo

intransitive verb

1a : to go away without ceremony : depart simply packed up and left
b : quit, stop used with up or in why don't you pack in, before you kill yourself— Millard Lampell
2a : to stow goods and equipment for transportation
b : to be suitable for packing a knit dress packs well
3a : to assemble in a group : congregate
b : to crowd together
4 : to become built up or compacted in a layer or mass the ore packed into a stony mass
5a : to carry goods or equipment
b : to travel with one's baggage (as by horse)


verb (2)
packed; packing; packs

Definition of pack (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to influence the composition of so as to bring about a desired result pack a jury "… packing a court, increasing the number of justices so you can get a desired outcome. … "— Andy Biggs — see also court-packing, pack the court
2 archaic : to arrange (the cards in a pack) so as to cheat



Definition of pack (Entry 4 of 4)

chiefly Scotland

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Other Words from pack

Verb (1)

packability \ ˌpa-​kə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce pack (audio) \ noun
packable \ ˈpa-​kə-​bəl How to pronounce pack (audio) \ adjective

Examples of pack in a Sentence

Noun He took a map and a bottle of water out of his pack. hikers carrying heavy packs up a mountain They loaded the packs onto the horses. The entire pack of crayons spilled on the floor. Cigarettes typically come in packs of 20. You'll receive your informational pack upon arrival.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Ticket prices are $2.50 for a single ticket, $24 for a strip of 10, $38 for a book of 25 and $140 for a pack of 110 tickets. Carol Kovach, cleveland, 31 May 2021 Many of the bones bore teeth marks from hyenas that had gnawed on them, which means that cave might have served as food storage for the pack. Ashley Strickland, CNN, 15 May 2021 Or freeze clumps of corn or pack bait in ice cube trays to toss them by hand or with the above tool. Bill May,, 22 May 2021 North Carolina was able to break through and get one goal back in the 89th minute as McDonald brought down a header from Lynn Williams and fought her way through a pack of Pride defenders to muscle a shot past McLeod. Mitchell Northam,, 22 May 2021 The fewer than a dozen wolves currently living in Northern California include the Lassen pack, which consists of five wolves, a new pair spotted in Siskiyou County last year, OR-93 and OR-103, a male that crossed into Northern California on May 4. Los Angeles Times, 22 May 2021 Toni Collette leads the pack of Welsh dreamers who pool their money to buy a racehorse., 21 May 2021 The kit includes a diaper, a pack of wipes, a face mask, hand sanitizer, two disposable changing pads, two trash bags, and a pair of gloves. Lindsey Hunter Lopez, USA TODAY, 21 May 2021 Training the next series of soccer stars takes players and a pack like the Franklin Sports Soccer Balls. Chris Hachey, BGR, 21 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The Tigers reached out to Hill on Wednesday morning — an off day before starting a four-game road series with the Chicago White Sox — and told him to pack his bags and catch a flight. Evan Petzold, Detroit Free Press, 3 June 2021 Ultimately, the dud dough did him in, and Chris is told to pack his knives and go. oregonlive, 28 May 2021 The pandemic and the unprecedented union drive in Alabama shone an often negative spotlight on working conditions for the hundreds of thousands of workers who pack, ship, and deliver Amazon’s goods., 26 May 2021 Kiki is the one who must pack her knives and go; the raw chicken is an absolute no-no in Top Chef world. Vulture, 14 May 2021 Those getting raises include warehouse workers who pack and ship orders as well as those who work in Amazon’s package sorting centers and other facilities. Joseph Pisani,, 28 Apr. 2021 Hall had to pack up his knives -- again -- and go home. Mary Colurso |, al, 8 Apr. 2021 One night, guards roused the women and told them to pack: a bus was waiting to take them away. Raffi Khatchadourian, The New Yorker, 5 Apr. 2021 The pandemic has exposed how Amazon treats its workers who pack and ship boxes inside vast warehouses. Joseph Pisani And Anne D'innocenzio, USA TODAY, 4 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Last season the Lynx took an average of 21.5 three-pointers a game, which put them mid-pack, sixth overall, in the league. Kent Youngblood, Star Tribune, 10 May 2021 This field will be a balance of front-runners, stalkers, mid-pack closers, and deep closers. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, 26 Apr. 2021 It’s specially designed for kids that have grown out of a pack-n-play but aren’t quite ready for a full-sized mattress. Korin Miller, Forbes, 12 Mar. 2021 Pre-pack filings have become pretty widespread, but this chapter 11 filing has to be viewed as a major success, especially considering the perilous times many retail chains find themselves in these days. Warren Shoulberg, Forbes, 25 Feb. 2021 Masks are sold individually or in a multi-pack, as well as in a selection of colors. Zoe Malin, NBC News, 23 Dec. 2020 Children’s masks are sold individually or in a multi-pack, and are made for those 5 and up. Hanna Horvath, NBC News, 18 June 2020

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

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First Known Use of pack


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

Verb (1)

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Verb (2)

1575, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1686, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pack


Middle English, of Low German or Dutch origin; akin to Middle Low German & Middle Dutch pak pack

Verb (2)

obsolete pack to make a secret agreement


perhaps from obsolete pack to make a secret agreement

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Time Traveler for pack

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for pack

Last Updated

6 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Pack.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for pack



English Language Learners Definition of pack

: a bag or bundle of objects that is carried on a person's or animal's back
: a small paper or cardboard package in which small things are sold
: the amount contained in one pack


\ ˈpak How to pronounce pack (audio) \

Kids Definition of pack

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a bundle arranged for carrying especially on the back of a person or animal
2 : a group of like persons or things a Cub Scout pack a wolf pack


packed; packing

Kids Definition of pack (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to put into a container or bundle Pack your clothes.
2 : to put things into Have you packed a suitcase?
3 : to crowd into so as to make full : cram Students packed the auditorium.
4 : to send away Parents pack children off to school.

Other Words from pack

packer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for pack


pack, cram, and stuff mean to fill something to its limit or beyond. pack may be used for the act of filling up tightly in an orderly way. Pack a trunk. Or it may mean filling up something too much. People packed the room. cram usually is used when something has been filled in a forceful, careless, or disorderly way. She crammed everything into one small box. stuff means filling something as much as it will hold and often to the point of bulging. I stuffed my bag with apples.


\ ˈpak How to pronounce pack (audio) \

Medical Definition of pack

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a container shielded with lead or mercury for holding radium in large quantities especially for therapeutic application
2a : absorbent material saturated with water or other liquid for therapeutic application to the body or a body part — see cold pack, hot pack — compare ice pack
b : a folded square or compress of gauze or other absorbent material used especially to maintain a clear field in surgery, to plug cavities, to check bleeding by compression, or to apply medication

Medical Definition of pack (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cover or surround with a pack packed it away from the operative field with gauze packs— R. P. Parsons specifically : to envelop (a patient) in a wet or dry sheet or blanket

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Legal Definition of pack

: to influence the composition of (as a political agency) so as to bring about a desired result pack a jury

More from Merriam-Webster on pack

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pack

Nglish: Translation of pack for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pack for Arabic Speakers


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