English edit

Paddling at sunrise
videogame paddles (7)

Pronunciation edit

  • IPA(key): /ˈpædl̩/, /ˈpæ.dəl/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ædəl

Etymology 1 edit

Partly from the verb paddle ("to splash, dabble"; see below) and partly from Middle English padell (small spade). Middle English padell is from Medieval Latin padela, itself of uncertain origin: perhaps an alteration of Middle English *spaddle (see also spaddle), a diminutive of spade; or from Latin patella (pan, plate), the diminutive of patina, or a merger of the two. Compare Ancient Greek πηδάλιον (pēdálion, rudder, steering oar), derived from πηδός (pēdós, the blade of an oar; an oar).

Alternative forms edit

Noun edit

paddle (countable and uncountable, plural paddles)

  1. A two-handed implement consisting of a shaft with one or two blades attached to the end(s) used to propel a canoe, kayak or a small boat. A paddle is unattached to the boat and freely operated with the hands, compared with an oar which is attached to the boat at a pivot point.
    1. A single-bladed version is typically used on canoes and some other small boats.
    2. A double-bladed version with blades at each end of the shaft is used for kayaking.
  2. The use of a paddle to propel a boat; a session of paddling.
    • 2021, Jordan Wylie, The Power of the Paddle:
      I managed one mighty paddle of 38km up the coast to Wicklow before the next bloody storm was due to hit.
    We had a nice paddle this morning.
  3. A slat of a paddleboat's wheel.
  4. A paddlewheel.
  5. A blade of a waterwheel.
  6. (video games, dated) A game controller with a round wheel used to control player movement along one axis of the video screen.
  7. (Britain) A meandering walk or dabble through shallow water, especially at the seaside.
  8. A kitchen utensil shaped like a paddle and used for mixing, beating etc.
  9. A broad, flat spanking implement.
    The paddle practically ousted the British cane for spankings in the independent US.
  10. (table tennis) A broad, flat device used in striking the ball, analogous to a racket in tennis.
    Synonyms: racket, bat (UK)
  11. A flat board with a number of holes or indentations, used to carry small alcoholic drinks such as shots.
    • 2019, Ted Bruning, The Bar Owners' Handbook, page 111:
      And it really is a paddle, too, with a blade big enough to hold several sampling glasses of different beers (known for some reason as a 'flight') for customers to try. Beer paddles have become very popular in American craft beer bars: []
  12. A flat limb of an aquatic animal, adapted for swimming.
    A sea turtle's paddles make it swim almost as fast as land tortoises are slow.
  13. In a sluice, a panel that controls the flow of water.
  14. A handheld electrode used for defibrillation or cardioversion.
  15. (slang) A person's hand.
  16. (medicine) A flap of attached skin that has been cut away from a wound.
    • 2009, Berish Strauch, Luis O. Vasconez, M.d., Elizabeth J. Hall-Findlay, Grabb's Encyclopedia of Flaps - Volume 1, page 373:
      A large ( 13 x 25 cm ) paddle of skin was used to cover a large wound following a temporal bone resection.
    • 2012, Mark L. Urken, Mack L. Cheney, Keith E. Blackwell, Atlas of Regional and Free Flaps for Head and Neck Reconstruction, page 235:
      About 10% of perforators to the skin paddle of the flap are septocutaneous blood vessels that travel though the intermuscular septum that separates the rectus femoris muscle from the vastus lateralis muscle.
  17. (sports, uncountable) Alternative form of padel
Derived terms edit
Descendants edit
  • Danish: paddel, padle
Translations edit
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.
See also edit

Verb edit

paddle (third-person singular simple present paddles, present participle paddling, simple past and past participle paddled)

  1. (transitive) To propel something through water with a paddle, oar, hands, etc.
  2. (intransitive) To row a boat with less than one's full capacity.
  3. (transitive) To spank with a paddle.
    • 1986 January 15, Bill Watterson, Calvin & Hobbes (comic):
      Do you think we'll get paddled? They can't paddle me! I'm a girl!!
  4. To pat or stroke amorously or gently.
  5. To tread upon; to trample.
Derived terms edit
Translations edit

Etymology 2 edit

Recorded since 1530, probably cognate with Low German paddeln (to tramp about), frequentative form of padjen (to tramp, run in short steps), from pad (also in Dutch dialects). Compare also Saterland Frisian paddelje (to paddle).

Verb edit

paddle (third-person singular simple present paddles, present participle paddling, simple past and past participle paddled)

  1. (intransitive, Britain) To walk or dabble playfully in shallow water, especially at the seaside.
  2. (intransitive) To dog paddle in water.
  3. (intransitive) To toddle.
    • 1889, J. H. Riddell, A Terrible Vengeance:
      [] little feet paddling round and about a man's bed and following wherever he went.
  4. (archaic, intransitive) To toy or caress using hands or fingers.
Translations edit

Further reading edit

German edit

Verb edit


  1. inflection of paddeln:
    1. first-person singular present
    2. first/third-person singular subjunctive I
    3. singular imperative