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See also: Paw



Etymology 1Edit

A dog's paw.

From Middle English pawe, from Old French poue, poe, from Frankish *pōta (compare Dutch poot, Low German Pote, German Pfote), from Frankish *pōtōn (to put, stick, plant) (compare Dutch poten 'to plant'), from Proto-Germanic *putōną (compare Old English potian (to push), pȳtan (to put out, poke out), Icelandic pota (to stick), Albanian putër 'paw'). More at put.



paw (plural paws)

  1. The soft foot of a mammal or other animal, generally a quadruped, that has claws or nails; comparable to a human hand or foot.
    Synonyms: hand, foot
    Hypernym: limb extremity
    Meronyms: claw, finger
    Holonym: limb
  2. (humorous) A hand.
    Get your grubby paws off my things!
Coordinate termsEdit
Derived termsEdit


paw (third-person singular simple present paws, present participle pawing, simple past and past participle pawed)

  1. (of an animal) To go through something (such as a garbage can) with paws.
    Hypernym: handle
  2. (of an animal) To gently push on something with a paw.
    Hypernym: touch
  3. (of an animal) To draw the forefoot along the ground; to beat or scrape with the forefoot.
    • Bible, Job xxxix. 21
      He paweth in the valley, and rejoiceth in his strength: he goeth on to meet the armed men.
  4. (by extension, of a human) To touch someone (with the hands) in a sexual way.
    • 1997 August 17, Robert Spector, in
      IronMan used to be good in this way, back in the '80s. [] They wouldn't subscribe to the old, "Let's put a male bodybuilder with silicone babes pawing him" cover that's mainstay now.
    • 1997 October 26, Verbotene, quoted by Amy McWilliams, in
      So, Katherine was out with Luke and they were both quite dolled up and swoon-worthy. Katherine fawned all over Luke and pawed him, but to what end? Was Stefan supposed to believe that Luke and Katherine have some sort of a thing going? What was the point of this display from Katherine's perspective?
    • 2002 July 18, Lurker Dave, in rec.arts.comics.marvel.universe:
      Subtlety is great, but what exactly happened with Jessica and the cop during sex that he locked her up afterwards? Also, what was the item she nicked from his shirt while she pawed him?
    • 2018 February, Robert Draper, “They are Watching You—and Everything Else on the Planet: Technology and Our Increasing Demand for Security have Put Us All under Surveillance. Is Privacy Becoming just a Memory?”, in National Geographic[1], Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, ISSN 0027-9358, OCLC 1049714034, archived from the original on 14 June 2018:
      Tonight there are no drug deals, no fights, only the random foolishness of the young and inebriated. They stagger with linked arms down the middle of the street. They paw at each other.
  5. (by extension, of a human) To clumsily dig through something.
  6. (transitive, dated) To flatter.
See alsoEdit

Etymology 2Edit

The word probably has an origin in baby talk: see ‘pa.


  • enPR: , IPA(key): /pɔː/
  • Rhymes: -ɔː
  • (file)
  • (file)
  • Homophones: poor (in non-rhotic accents), pore (in non-rhotic accents), pour (in non-rhotic accents)
  • Hyphenation: paw (one syllable)


paw (plural paws)

  1. (nonstandard or rural) Father; pa.
    Synonyms: pawpaw, pa, papa, father, dad, daddy, pappy
    Hypernym: parent
    Hyponym: step-paw
    Coordinate terms: maw, brother, sis, sissy
Derived termsEdit
Related termsEdit


Lower SorbianEdit



From Proto-Slavic *pavъ (peacock), borrowed from Latin pavō. Cognates within Slavic include Upper Sorbian paw, Polish paw, Czech páv, Slovene pav, and Russian павли́н (pavlín).



paw (feminine equivalent pawa)

  1. peacock (pheasant of one of the genera Pavo and Afropavo)



Polish Wikipedia has articles on:
Wikipedia pl



paw m anim

  1. (male) peacock
  2. (colloquial) puke; vomit


Derived termsEdit

Further readingEdit

  • paw”, in Wielki słownik języka polskiego, Instytut Języka Polskiego PAN, (Please provide a date or year)
  • paw in Polish dictionaries at PWN