\ ˈpal How to pronounce pal (audio) \

Definition of pal

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a close friend


palled; palling

Definition of pal (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to be or become pals : associate as pals they've palled around for years

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Other Words from pal


palship \ ˈpal-​ˌship How to pronounce palship (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for pal

Synonyms: Noun

alter ego, amigo, buddy, chum, compadre, comrade, confidant, confidante, crony, familiar, friend, intimate, mate [chiefly British], musketeer

Antonyms: Noun

enemy, foe

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Examples of pal in a Sentence


We've been pals since we were kids. Come on—be a pal and lend me the money.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

On much of his work he was joined by some combination of his fellow Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section, aka The Swampers, session musician pals, including bassist David Hood, guitarist Jimmy Johnson and keyboardists Barry Beckett and Spooner Oldham. Matt Wake |, al, "Swampers drum legend’s hot beats and cold winter," 7 Aug. 2019 Boston’s president of baseball operations has increasingly isolated himself with pals Frank Wren and Tony La Russa and has few friends inside Fenway’s walls. Dan Shaughnessy,, "Dave Dombrowski may have to take the fall for Red Sox’ falloff," 6 Aug. 2019 Zermatt is the more low-key ski town where cars aren’t allowed but the royals are; Prince William and Kate Middleton have been known to hit the slopes here with pals. Kaitlin Menza, Town & Country, "Here’s How to Take a Train Trip Through the Swiss Alps," 20 July 2019 Ariel can sneak up to the surface at any time with her pals Scuttle and the *ahem* Jamaican crab Sebastian (sorry, Flounder!) and keep that bronze base tight. Jasmine Gomez, Seventeen, "People Are Clapping Back At Trolls Who Are Mad That Halle Bailey Will Star in Disney’s "The Little Mermaid"," 8 July 2019 Turner had a bachelorette party with her pals (including GoT co-star Maisie Williams) in Benidorm, Spain earlier this month. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Sophie Turner Is Cute as a Button in Her Checkered Romper in Paris," 21 June 2019 Meanwhile, Netflix, Google, Amazon and their tech pals are storming L.A.’s office market. Los Angeles Times, "A folk art trash palace in the shadow of Hearst Castle," 19 July 2019 Báez came up again in the third with a bright red bat, stepped out of the box and playfully waved to his pal Francisco Lindor in the AL dugout. Ben Walker, The Denver Post, "AL holds off NL for 4-3 win in All-Star Game," 9 July 2019 The plying doesn’t draw much of a crowd—four or five people, generally, most of whom are his pals. Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, "“Yesterday” Wants to Hold Your Hand," 28 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pal.' 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 pal


circa 1886, in the meaning defined above


1875, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pal


Romany phral, phal brother, friend, from Sanskrit bhrātṛ brother; akin to Old English brōthor brother

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Dictionary Entries near pal







palace car

Statistics for pal

Last Updated

12 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pal

The first known use of pal was in 1875

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More Definitions for pal



English Language Learners Definition of pal

: a close friend
used to address a man in an angry or annoyed way


\ ˈpal How to pronounce pal (audio) \

Kids Definition of pal

: a close friend

Legal Definition of PAL

passive activity loss

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More from Merriam-Webster on pal

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pal

Spanish Central: Translation of pal

Nglish: Translation of pal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pal for Arabic Speakers

Comments on pal

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


not constant or steady

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