pause

noun
\ ˈpȯz How to pronounce pause (audio) \

Definition of pause

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a temporary stop
2a : a break in a verse
b : a brief suspension of the voice to indicate the limits and relations of sentences and their parts
3 : temporary inaction especially as caused by uncertainty : hesitation
4a : the sign denoting a fermata
b : a mark (such as a period or comma) used in writing or printing to indicate or correspond to a pause of voice
5 : a reason or cause for pausing (as to reconsider) a thought that should give one pause
6 : a function of an electronic device that pauses a recording

pause

verb
paused; pausing

Definition of pause (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to stop temporarily
2 : to linger for a time

transitive verb

: to cause to pause : stop

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Synonyms for pause

Synonyms: Noun

break, breath, breather, interruption, lull, recess

Synonyms: Verb

break

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Examples of pause in a Sentence

Noun

There was a brief pause in the conversation. After a pause the teacher continued the lesson. He hit pause on the player and explained the significance of the song's lyrics. Please hit the pause button on the remote control.

Verb

She paused for a few seconds before crossing the street. We paused briefly to look at the scenery. He talked for over an hour without pausing. He picked up the remote control and paused the movie.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The brake and gas pedals are also decorated with pause and play icons like an MP3 player. Peter Valdes-dapena, CNN, "VW unveils its first electric car," 9 Sep. 2019 But a black woman, now that’s something that will make a person pause and want to have a conversation about it. Justin Phillips, SFChronicle.com, "Wrecking Ball Coffee’s upcoming Berkeley cafe will be about much more than just coffee," 16 Aug. 2019 When the topic came up, there were usually red faces (on both our parts), meandering pauses, and long throat-clearing. Rachael Rifkin, Good Housekeeping, "Millennial Parents Have Changed the Way We Talk With Kids About Puberty," 9 Aug. 2019 But the clinics reacted warily to the administration's enforcement pause, and the widening rift could eventually affect basic health services for many low-income women. Author: Ricardo Alonso-zaldiver, Anchorage Daily News, "Administration pauses enforcement of abortion restriction," 22 July 2019 But the clinics reacted warily to the administration's enforcement pause, and the widening rift could eventually affect basic health services for many low-income women. CBS News, "Trump administration pauses enforcement of abortion restriction," 21 July 2019 One of them, which signaled both a medium-length pause and a semantic boundary inside a sentence, hadn’t been used for that particular function before. Christopher Tayler, Harper's magazine, "New Books," 24 June 2019 Each game featured eight minutes of continuous action without any pauses and players were given three stock (lives) for each game in the match. Luke Feliciano, Cincinnati.com, "Cincinnati teen Jonathan Hill headed to Las Vegas for GameWorks eSports tournament," 9 June 2019 Hill does a really great job showing the isolation and awkwardness of his main character with quiet pauses and wonderfully natural, casual dialog that feels as messy as conversations among young teens really would be. Jacob Kastrenakes, The Verge, "New trailers: Jessica Jones, Ad Astra, The Lion King, and more," 8 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The Category 5 behemoth rampaged through the upper Bahamas with record-setting windspeeds, then lethally paused its forward motion over Grand Bahama for more than a day, allowing its destructive eyewall to spin in place. Tristram Korten, Smithsonian, "The Bahamas and the Caribbean Have Withstood Hurricanes for Centuries," 17 Sep. 2019 That divisive audience then paused to give Mazzie and Geli a heartfelt ovation. Lee Davidson, chicagotribune.com, "Retired Utah war dogs continue to save and heal lives," 13 Sep. 2019 Ideally, Iguodala would have stayed to help the Warriors through next season’s rough transition, then led them to another title or two, then paused on his way out the door to pose for the bronze statue. Scott Ostler, SFChronicle.com, "Goodbye Andre Iguodala: You will be missed," 1 July 2019 When Newman, the Pirates second baseman, caught Hunter Renfroe’s pop fly while standing just a few steps into the outfield grass, Tatis bolted from third and then paused, drawing a half-pump fake from Newman. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Padres notes: Tatis stuns again; Quantrill provides relief; Hedges bounces back," 24 June 2019 However, his 5-foot-7 frame could give some teams pause. Richard Morin, azcentral, "NHL mock draft: Who will fall to Arizona Coyotes at No. 14 in 2019 NHL draft?," 17 June 2019 But Lewis suffered a season-ending injury a month ago, and that might be giving some teams pause. Brody Miller, nola.com, "MLB Draft preview: What LSU players and signees to watch for," 3 June 2019 Any remaining reverence was paused across the next three hours. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Astros demolish Rays, 15-1," 28 Aug. 2019 Out in the yard, Lima paused to examine a stack of unmilled tree trunks. Felipe Fittipaldi, National Geographic, "Inside the faltering fight against illegal Amazon logging," 28 Aug. 2019

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for pause

Noun

Middle English, from Latin pausa, from Greek pausis, from pauein to stop

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Statistics for pause

Last Updated

10 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pause

The first known use of pause was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for pause

pause

noun

English Language Learners Definition of pause

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a temporary stop : a period of time in which something is stopped before it is started again
: a control that you use when you want to stop a recorded song, movie, etc., for a short time
music : the sign that is placed over or under a musical note, rest, etc., to show that it should be held longer than usual

pause

verb

English Language Learners Definition of pause (Entry 2 of 2)

: to stop doing something for a short time before doing it again
: to cause (a recorded song, movie, etc.) to stop for a short time by pushing a button on a device

pause

noun
\ ˈpȯz How to pronounce pause (audio) \

Kids Definition of pause

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a temporary stop
2 : a sign 𝄐 above a musical note or rest to show that the note or rest is to be held longer

pause

verb
paused; pausing

Kids Definition of pause (Entry 2 of 2)

: to stop for a time : make a temporary stop He paused, perhaps waiting for me to explain.— Gail Carson Levine, Ella Enchanted

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More from Merriam-Webster on pause

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pause

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for pause

Spanish Central: Translation of pause

Nglish: Translation of pause for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pause for Arabic Speakers

Comments on pause

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