\ˈpaks, ˈpäks \

Definition of pax 

1 : a tablet decorated with a sacred figure (as of Christ) and sometimes ceremonially kissed by participants at mass

2 : the kiss of peace in the Mass

3 : peace especially, capitalized : a period of general stability in international affairs under the influence of dominant military power usually used in combination with a latinized name Pax Americana

First Known Use of pax

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pax

Middle English, from Medieval Latin, from Latin, peace — more at peace

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about pax

Statistics for pax

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pax

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

See more words from the same century

More from Merriam-Webster on pax

See words that rhyme with pax Encyclopedia article about pax

Comments on pax

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


full of whispering sounds

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Vocab Quiz

  • the-education-of-achilles-eugne-delacroix
  • Which is a synonym of discomfit?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Add Diction

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


Love words? Need even more definitions?

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