pas·​sel | \ ˈpa-səl How to pronounce passel (audio) \

Definition of passel

: a large number or amount

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Passel and Parcel

The loss of the sound of "r" after a vowel and before another consonant in the middle of a word is common in spoken English. This linguistic idiosyncrasy has given our language a few new words, such as cuss from curse, bust from burst, and our featured word passel from parcel. The spelling passel originated in the 15th century, but the word's use as a collective noun for an indefinite number is a 19th-century Americanism. It was common primarily in local-color writing before getting a boost in the 1940s, when it began appearing in popular weekly magazines such as Time, Newsweek, and Saturday Review.

Examples of passel in a Sentence

reporters had a whole passel of questions for the new basketball coach the young couple had a passel of babies in the span of a few years
Recent Examples on the Web In the dead of winter, and the throes of the pandemic, the Berman family chose to foster a passel of puppies and their mother, all desperate for shelter. Mike Klingaman,, "These Howard County families opened their hearts and their homes to foster dogs during COVID-19 pandemic," 13 Apr. 2021 Regardless of how the tax increase proposal shakes out, the Oregon recreational marijauna industry is facing a passel of other hurdles. oregonlive, "Oregon’s billion-dollar weed economy faces new challenges," 1 Apr. 2021 But a passel of Trump aides and allies have created new political committees this year, which have the potential to further splinter donations made in his name. Anchorage Daily News, "Trump helped the GOP raise $2 billion. Now former aides and allies are jockeying to tap into his fundraising power.," 28 Mar. 2021 The result is a passel of space companies heading to public markets, some more prepared than others. Tim Fernholz, Quartz, "How the rocket business launched a wave of blank check acquisitions," 8 Mar. 2021 There’s a dinosaur float house on St. Charles Avenue, a house float featuring a passel of possums and a controversial ex-president on Mandeville Street, a volcano float house on Leontine Street and on and on. Doug Maccash,, "‘Mardi Gras For All Y'All’ online extravaganza to focus on the float house phenom," 3 Feb. 2021 On the men's side, the Olympics could also be an important tournament for the country's passel of promising young players, since the men's tournament is contested by under-23 teams rather than full squads. Special To The Star Tribune, Star Tribune, "A lot to gain (or lose) in 2021 for U.S. national teams," 30 Oct. 2020 The writers packed the first two seasons with a passel of Easter eggs, and now EW has the stories behind 12 of the most notable callbacks to Daniel-san's big-screen journey. Kristen Baldwin,, "12 Karate Kid Easter eggs in Cobra Kai and the stories behind them," 4 Sep. 2020 Then, in January 2019, the core launched another commercial mission, sending a passel of Iridium satellites into space. Eric Berger, Ars Technica, "SpaceX flies the same, sooty booster for the sixth time [Updated]," 18 Aug. 2020

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

1835, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for passel

alteration of parcel

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Last Updated

20 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Passel.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Apr. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of passel

US, informal : a large number or group of people or things

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