parry

verb
par·​ry | \ ˈper-ē How to pronounce parry (audio) , ˈpa-rē\
parried; parrying

Definition of parry

intransitive verb

1 : to ward off a weapon or blow parried forcefully and knocked his opponent's sword out of his hand
2 : to evade or turn aside something can parry and thrust … without losing the thread of his argument— Stewart Cockburn

transitive verb

1 : to ward off (something, such as a blow) parried the thrust of his opponent's sword
2 : to evade especially by an adroit answer parried the question

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from parry

parry noun

What do parry, parapet, and parasol have in common?

Parry (which is used in fencing, among other applications) probably comes from parez, a form of the French verb parer, meaning "to guard or ward off." Its history can be compared with that of two other English words: parapet and parasol. Those two terms go back to an Italian word (parare) that means "to shield or guard." (A parapet shields soldiers and a parasol wards off the sun.) All three—parry, parapet, and parasol—can ultimately be traced to the Latin parare, meaning "to prepare." And they're not alone. Other descendants of the Latin term include apparatus, disparate, emperor, and even prepare.

Examples of parry in a Sentence

He parried the thrust of his opponent's sword. He parried and then threw a punch. She cleverly parried the reporters' questions.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

The Portugal forward saw his swerving shot parried by Andrea Consigli in the 23rd minute but Sami Khedira was on hand to fire in the rebound. Daniella Matar, The Seattle Times, "Juventus beats Sassuolo 3-0 to go 11 points clear in Serie A," 10 Feb. 2019 It is bookended by two mammoth works featuring a camouflage pattern—an apt motif for an artist who cultivated a facade of blank neutrality, parrying probing questions about his art and inspiration with gnomic sound bites. Brenda Cronin, WSJ, "Warhol Takes New York, Again," 26 Oct. 2018 In China, for example, Alibaba reportedly is upping its stake in a major delivery concern, parrying, as is its wont, an investment from rival Tencent. Aaron Pressman, Fortune, "Data Sheet—What DoorDash Plans to Do With Another Half a Billion Dollars of Capital," 1 Mar. 2018 Giovanni Simeone surged forward from the center circle and shrugged off two challenges only to have his effort parried by Sirigu but Chiesa tapped in the rebound. Daniella Matar, The Seattle Times, "Inter, Napoli, Fiorentina into Italian Cup quarterfinals," 13 Jan. 2019 Thomas Muller had a shot parried away after the ball had broken to him in the box, but Bayern still weren't creating many clear cut chances despite seeing a lot more of the ball. SI.com, "FC Köln 1-3 Bayern Munich: Second Half Comeback Ensures Visitors Take Maximum Points," 5 May 2018 Officials in San Jose, Calif., have tried to parry that offensive by fast-tracking installations for carriers that have agreed to help fund a local internet-access initiative. Drew Fitzgerald, WSJ, "Across the U.S., 5G Runs Into Local Resistance," 13 Sep. 2018 In the midst of a week that has seen May parrying threats to her hold on power, Trump second-guessed her handling of the main issue on her plate: how Britain should cut its ties to the European Union. BostonGlobe.com, "At NATO, Trump claims allies make new defense spending commitments after he upends summit," 13 July 2018 Sanchez injected a fresh dose of dynamism to Manchester United and scored — immediately after a penalty was parried — on his debut to seal a 2-0 victory over Huddersfield. USA TODAY, "Mkhitaryan, Sanchez prosper at new homes after transfer swap," 3 Feb. 2018

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

1671, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for parry

borrowed from French parer "to ward off, avert" (perhaps directly from the plural imperative parez), going back to Middle French, probably borrowed from Italian parare "to prepare, adorn, avert, shield, keep out," going back to Latin parāre "to supply, provide, make ready" — more at pare

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about parry

Listen to Our Podcast about parry

Statistics for parry

Last Updated

2 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for parry

The first known use of parry was in 1671

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for parry

parry

verb

English Language Learners Definition of parry

: to defend yourself by turning or pushing aside (a punch, a weapon, etc.)
: to avoid giving a direct answer to (a question) by being skillful or clever

parry

verb
par·​ry | \ ˈper-ē How to pronounce parry (audio) \
parried; parrying

Kids Definition of parry

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to turn aside an opponent's weapon or blow
2 : to avoid by a skillful answer She parried an embarrassing question.

parry

noun
plural parries

Kids Definition of parry (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act or instance of skillfully avoiding something

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on parry

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with parry

Spanish Central: Translation of parry

Nglish: Translation of parry for Spanish Speakers

Comments on parry

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

WORD OF THE DAY

likely to have or produce good results

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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