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A wooden pallet
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Etymology 1Edit

From Middle English palet, from Anglo-Norman palete, from Old Norse pallr.

This etymology is incomplete. You can help Wiktionary by elaborating on the origins of this term.


pallet (plural pallets)

  1. A portable platform, usually designed to be easily moved by a forklift, on which goods can be stacked, for transport or storage.
  2. (military) A flat base for combining stores or carrying a single item to form a unit load for handling, transportation, and storage by materials handling equipment[1].
  3. (military) (DOD only) 463L pallet – An 88” x 108” aluminum flat base used to facilitate the upload and download of aircraft[1].
Derived termsEdit


pallet (third-person singular simple present pallets, present participle palleting, simple past and past participle palleted)

  1. (transitive) To load or stack (goods) onto pallets.

Etymology 2Edit

From the Middle English paillet, from Anglo-Norman paillete (bundle of straw), from Old French paille (straw, chaff), from Latin palea (chaff)


pallet (plural pallets)

  1. A straw bed.
  2. (By extension from above) A makeshift bed.

Etymology 3Edit

Latin palla: to cut; hence a strip of cloth. The diminutive of the pale.


pallet (plural pallets)

  1. (heraldry) A narrow vertical stripe.

Etymology 4Edit


pallet (plural pallets)

  1. (painting) Archaic form of palette.
    • Robert Southey
      The Old Dragon fled when the wonder he spied, / And cursed his own fruitless endeavor; / While the Painter call'd after his rage to deride, / Shook his pallet and brushes in triumph, and cried, / "I'll paint thee more ugly than ever!"
    • 1860, Chambers's Information for the People (volume 1, page 203)
      For example, let a painter's pallet be suspended from the thumb-hole, as in the figure []
  2. A wooden implement, often oval or round, used by potters, crucible makers, etc., for forming, beating, and rounding their works.
  3. A potter's wheel.
  4. (gilding) An instrument used to take up gold leaf from the pillow, and to apply it.
  5. (gilding) A tool for gilding the backs of books over the bands.
  6. (brickmaking) A board on which a newly moulded brick is conveyed to the hack.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Knight to this entry?)
  7. (engineering) A click or pawl for driving a ratchet wheel.
  8. (engineering) One of the series of disks or pistons in the chain pump.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Knight to this entry?)
  9. (horology) One of the pieces or levers connected with the pendulum of a clock, or the balance of a watch, which receive the immediate impulse of the scape-wheel, or balance wheel.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Brande & C. to this entry?)
  10. (music) In the organ, a valve between the wind chest and the mouth of a pipe or row of pipes.
  11. (zoology) One of a pair of shelly plates that protect the siphon tubes of certain bivalves, such as the Teredo.
  12. A cup containing three ounces, formerly used by surgeons.

Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for pallet in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)


  • The Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition, Oxford University Press
  • Notes:
  1. 1.0 1.1 Joint Publication 1-02 U.S. Department of Defense Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms; 12 April 2001 (As Amended Through 14 April 2006).




From English pallet.



pallet m (plural pallets, diminutive palletje n)

  1. pallet