par·​ty | \ ˈpär-tē How to pronounce party (audio) \
plural parties

Definition of party

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person or group taking one side of a question, dispute, or contest The parties in the lawsuit reached an agreement.
2 : a group of persons organized for the purpose of directing the policies of a government political parties with opposing agendas
3 : a person or group participating in an action or affair a mountain-climbing party a party to the transaction
4 : a particular individual : person an old party approaching 80
5 : a detail of soldiers The infantry repulsed a landing party from the ship.
6 : a social gathering a dinner party a birthday party also : the entertainment provided for it


partied; partying

Definition of party (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to attend or give parties broadly : revel sense 1

Other Words from party


party adjective


partyer or less commonly partier \ ˈpär-​tē-​ər How to pronounce party (audio) \ noun

Examples of party in a Sentence

Noun We are having a party. a high school dance party Were you invited to her party? Our New Year's Eve party was a huge success. political parties with opposing agendas The senator is loyal to his party. the two parties in the marriage contract The parties in the lawsuit reached a settlement. Verb He spent the weekend partying with his friends. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Photos published by Cuban news ACN and Granma, the Cuban communist party's newspaper, showed severe damage to the hotel's walls and clouds of smoke billowing into the sky. N'dea Yancey-bragg, USA TODAY, 6 May 2022 The new partisan framing of the district was highlighted earlier this week when Republican J.R. Majewski won his party's primary. Rick Klein, ABC News, 6 May 2022 Winning in Texas could give Democrats insight into how to win over some of the most conservative Latino voters while still serving the party's most reliable constituency -- Black voters. Abhi Rahman, CNN, 5 May 2022 Sweeney Bell won the party's endorsement as the only clerk candidate to seek it this year. Amelia Pak-harvey, The Indianapolis Star, 3 May 2022 Several of the Republicans vying to earn the party's nomination to challenge Whitmer for governor in 2022 applauded Alito's draft order. Arpan Lobo, Detroit Free Press, 3 May 2022 The Academy Award winner embraced the fun side of American history for the party's Gilded Glamour theme, wearing a white knee-length flapper-style dress by Louis Vuitton. Quinci Legardye, Harper's BAZAAR, 2 May 2022 At the same time, Peters acknowledged their own party's challenges, particularly Biden's low popularity. Steve Peoples, Chron, 2 May 2022 However, the staffer told him there wasn't a path to defeat McGrath, and contesting the primary results could hurt his relationship with the Democratic Party and hurt McGrath as the party's nominee to challenge McConnell that November. Morgan Watkins, The Courier-Journal, 27 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Rocco’s Tacos invites revelers to party with the restaurant’s owner, Rocco Mangel, at the Orlando location. Patrick Connolly, Orlando Sentinel, 4 May 2022 In just two years, Elsa Majimbo has gained 2.5 million Instagram followers by eating potato chips in bed, encouraging her followers to party to the point of reporting fraudulent activity to their banks and laughing maniacally. Alexandra Sternlicht, Forbes, 26 Apr. 2022 Iosyp Sherehiy, owner of the JJ Night Club, where Mr. Zhupanyn used to party as a student, is letting the lawmakers store supplies on his premises. Jillian Kay Melchior, WSJ, 21 Mar. 2022 Camaro score his first Cup win in Ruoff Mortgage 500, his amigos will have a perfect view and an invitation to party with the team in victory lane. Cole Cusumano, The Arizona Republic, 10 Mar. 2022 No longer could party leaders overseeing campaign committees bend members to their will by offering -- or withholding -- support. Chris Cillizza, CNN, 9 Mar. 2022 From floral gowns to flirty cocktail dresses, attendees showed up ready to party in an array of Oscar de la Renta looks. Eliseé Browchuk, Vogue, 13 Feb. 2022 But with the Omicron variant still circulating and live events trickling back after long shutdowns, are Super Bowl fans ready to party and spend in L.A.? Hugo Martín, Los Angeles Times, 28 Jan. 2022 If that sounds like you, then the JBL Boombox 3 will be ready to party in the summer and will cost $499.95. Mark Sparrow, Forbes, 5 Jan. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of party


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1919, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for party

Noun and Verb

Middle English partie part, party, from Anglo-French, from partir to divide — more at part

Learn More About party

Time Traveler for party

Time Traveler

The first known use of party was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near party

part writing


party animal

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for party

Last Updated

10 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Party.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for party


par·​ty | \ ˈpär-tē How to pronounce party (audio) \
plural parties

Kids Definition of party

1 : a social gathering or the entertainment provided for it
2 : a person or group concerned in some action He's a party to the lawsuit. A search party was formed.
3 : a group of people who take one side of a question or share a set of beliefs a political party


plural parties

Legal Definition of party

1a : one (as a person, group, or entity) constituting alone or with others one of the sides of a proceeding, transaction, or agreement the parties to a contract a person who signed the instrument as a party to the instrumentUniform Commercial Code
accommodated party
: a party to an instrument for whose benefit an accommodation party signs and incurs liability on the instrument : a party for whose benefit an accommodation is made
accommodation party
: a party who signs and thereby incurs liability on an instrument that is issued for value and given for the benefit of an accommodated party
secured party
: a party holding a security interest in another's property
third party
: a person other than the principals insurance against injury to a third party
b : one (as an individual, firm, or corporation) that constitutes the plaintiff or defendant in an action also : one so involved in the prosecution or defense of a judicial or quasi-judicial proceeding as to be bound or substantially affected by the decision or judgment therein
adverse party
: a party to an action who is on the opposing side specifically : a party to a finally decided action whose interests would be served by having the judgment upheld on appeal and who is entitled to notice of an appeal
aggrieved party
: a party with a legally recognized interest that is injuriously affected especially by an act of a judicial or quasi-judicial body and that confers standing to appeal

called also aggrieved person, party aggrieved

indispensable party
: a party whose rights are so connected with the claims being litigated in an action that no judgment can be rendered without affecting or impairing those rights, no complete disposition of the action can be made without the party's joinder, and whose nonjoinder will result in the dismissal of an action — compare necessary party in this entry

Note: Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 19 provides the courts with discretion in determining whether the absence of a party requires dismissal of an action, replacing an older and more rigid basis for determination. The rule states that “the court must determine whether, in equity and good conscience, the action should proceed among the existing parties or should be dismissed.”

innocent party
: a party having no fault in or responsibility for the situation for which judicial relief is sought : a party who comes into court with clean hands
necessary party
: a party whose interests are so connected with an action that he or she should be joined in order to fully determine the controversy but whose nonjoinder because of a valid excuse will not result in dismissal — compare indispensable party in this entry
nominal party
: a party who has no actual stake in the outcome of litigation and whose inclusion as a party is solely for the purpose of conforming with procedural rules
party aggrieved
: aggrieved party in this entry
party in interest
1 : a person whose rights are or will be affected by an action taken especially by a government or judicial body especially : a person whose pecuniary interests are affected by a bankruptcy proceeding
2 : real party in interest in this entry
proper party
: a party whose interests are likely to be affected by litigation and whose inclusion in the litigation is preferable but not essential
real party in interest
: a party who according to the applicable law is entitled to enforce the right that forms the basis of the claim regardless of who will actually benefit by the outcome

Note: Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 17(a) requires that “an action must be prosecuted in the name of the real party in interest.”

third party
1 : a person who is not a party to an action but who is or may be liable to the defendant in the action for all or part of the plaintiff's claim and against whom the defendant may bring a third-party complaint
2 : a person who is not a party to an action but who is or may be liable to the plaintiff in the action for all or part of a counterclaim and against whom the plaintiff may bring a third-party complaint — see also third-party complaint
2 : a group of persons usually sharing a set of political ideals who are organized for the purpose of directing the policies of a government

More from Merriam-Webster on party

Nglish: Translation of party for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of party for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about party


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