noun, often attributive
\ˈpak \

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

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 \ noun
packable \ˈpa-​kə-​bəl \ adjective

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.

Examples of pack in a Sentence


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

In the television categories, FX’s The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story leads the overall pack with four nominations, including Best TV Limited Series. Vox, "Golden Globes 2019: winners, nominations, and biggest moments," 6 Dec. 2018 The blind pack contains the 12-inch wand, a wand box and a 3-D bookmark that matches your magical character. Rachel Siegel, The Seattle Times, "Hottest toys for Christmas (unicorn poop included)," 28 Nov. 2018 Leading the pack was Kardashian West, fresh off her recent date night with husband Kanye and dressed directionally in a skintight bodysuit, PVC jeans, and clear heels. Edward Barsamian, Vogue, "Kim Kardashian West Wears Sunglasses—And PVC Pants—at Night," 30 July 2018 At the end of the relatively short race, the packs were already out of charge. Jack Stewart, WIRED, "The Neat Engineering VW Used to Smash the Pikes Peak Record," 25 June 2018 Leading the pack is an update of the company’s Nokia 5, dubbed the Nokia 5.1. Aaron Pressman, Fortune, "Nokia Updates Smartphone Line With Affordable New Models," 29 May 2018 Most of Amazon’s options for popcorn replenishment are very big packs of popcorn that would likely overwhelm a small household. Shannon Liao, The Verge, "The AmazonBasics Microwave is for those who are spoiled by voice commands," 21 Nov. 2018 In the evenings, tattooed twenty-somethings pack into venues like Padepokan Seni Bagong Kussudiardja for jam sessions and Bintang beer. Marianna Cerini, Condé Nast Traveler, "Yogyakarta Is the Cultural Hub to Hit on Your Next Trip to Southeast Asia," 16 Nov. 2018 The three-story building measures just eight feet wide, but those eight feet pack a stylish punch thanks to dmvA’s renovations. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "400-year-old skinny house renovated into ‘one-room hotel’," 12 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

There was also a car packed with explosives that ignited during the strike, the statement added. Rahim Faiez, The Seattle Times, "US airstrike reportedly kills dozens of Afghan civilians," 28 Nov. 2018 But riders there have found that buses packed with Amazonians, who receive transit passes from the company, zip past stops during rush hour, unable to fit more passengers. Jay Greene, WSJ, "The ‘Prosperity Bomb’ of an Amazonian Invasion," 15 Nov. 2018 Power Moves: With Mercury shifting into your zone of solitary wanderings and messages from the body, this week is a delicious mental bathtub packed with rose petals. Bess Matassa, Teen Vogue, "Weekly Horoscopes October 29-November 4," 28 Oct. 2018 This fills out an already expansive adventure—packed with upgrades and skills to acquire for dozens of hours—with plenty of additional texture. Daniel Starkey, Ars Technica, "Assassin’s Creed Odyssey," 4 Oct. 2018 Unlike Moon this week in the North, Kim probably wouldn't deliver a speech in a stadium packed with thousands of South Koreans. Kim Tong-hyung, Fox News, "A Kim Jong Un visit to Seoul? It would be surreal challenge," 20 Sep. 2018 Just landed back home and had 1 hour to pack up & evacuate our home. Suzannah Weiss, Teen Vogue, "Lady Gaga Brings Pizza to California Wildfire Victims for World Kindness Day," 14 Nov. 2018 Literally just packed up essentials and a suitcase each and hopped in our cars. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "YouTube creators like Shane Dawson, Jake Paul are among SoCal wildfire evacuations," 9 Nov. 2018 All of the candy bars were presented on a single, paper-aluminum tray, not packed up to make the journey back home with me. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Yes, we flew to Japan to watch someone pour liquid nitrogen on custom Kit Kats," 28 Oct. 2018

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)

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Verb (2)

1587, 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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Statistics for pack

Last Updated

9 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pack

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

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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 \

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


\ˈpak \

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

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More from Merriam-Webster on pack

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pack

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pack

Spanish Central: Translation of pack

Nglish: Translation of pack for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pack for Arabic Speakers

Comments on pack

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


a nest or breeding place

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