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pass - definition and synonyms


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verb pass pronunciation in British English /pɑːs/
Word Forms
present tense
present participlepassing
past tensepassed
past participlepassed
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  1. 1
    [intransitive/transitive] to go past something
    They stopped at the crossing, waiting for the train to pass.
    The procession slowly passed us.
    We sometimes pass each other in the street.
  2. 2
    [intransitive] to move in a particular direction or to a particular place or position
    pass through/along/over etc: We passed through the gates of the old city.
    Two large birds passed over our heads.
    The signal passes through a device called a router.
    1. a.
      [transitive] to move something in a particular direction or to a particular place or position
      pass around/across/through etc: He passed his hand across his forehead.
      They managed to pass a message under the doorway.
    2. b.
      [intransitive] if a road, river, or stream passes through, across etc a place, its path follows that direction
      The railway line passes through Darlington, Newcastle, and Berwick.
  3. 3
    [intransitive/transitive] to be successful in an examination or test by achieving a satisfactory standard
    Did you pass?
    She passed her driving test.
    He’ll be in the team if he passes the fitness test today.
  4. 4
    [transitive] to put something into someones hand or into a position where they can take it
    Pass the salt, please.
    pass someone something: Could you pass me that newspaper?
    pass something to someone: He passed the camera to her so she could take a photograph.
  5. 5
    [transitive] to make a law, proposal etc become official, usually by voting to accept it
    This is one of the worst laws ever passed.
    1. a.
      [intransitive/transitive] if a law, proposal etc passes, or passes a particular law-making body, it becomes official as the result of a vote
      The legislation finally passed the House of Lords.
      If the bill passes, it will fundamentally affect people’s employment rights.
  6. 6
    [intransitive] if time or a period of time passes, it happens and comes to an end
    Time passes slowly when you’re waiting for something.
    The summer holidays passed quickly, as usual.
    with every day that passes/with every passing day: She grew less hopeful with every passing day.
    hardly/not a day passes without: Hardly a day passed without a journalist calling or knocking at our door.
    1. a.
      [transitive] to spend time doing something
      We passed the day swimming and lying in the sun.
  7. 7
    [intransitive] to come to an end
    Children can be very difficult at this age. Don’t worry – it’ll soon pass.
    I felt a sharp pain, but it soon passed.
  8. 9
    [intransitive] if words or looks pass between people, they speak to each other or look at each other in a particular way
    No one really knows what passed between them that day.
  9. 11
    [transitive] to become more than a particular amount
    The death toll has already passed 200.
    The three production sites will pass the 100,000 mark this quarter.
  10. 12
    [intransitive] to happen, or to be allowed to happen
    pass without comment (=without someone saying something about it): This innocent remark did not, however, pass without comment.
    pass unnoticed: Her mistake seemed to have passed unnoticed.
  11. 13
    [transitive] to make a comment or give an opinion, especially in order to criticize someone or something
    pass (a) comment (on/about): He was asked for his opinion but refused to pass comment.
  12. 14
    [transitive] formal to make something leave your body as a waste product or in a waste product
    I think he’s passing blood in his urine.
  13. 15
    [intransitive] to stop being owned or controlled by one person and start being owned or controlled by another
    pass to: Under the will, ownership of the business will pass to my daughter.
    pass from someone to someone: The estate has passed from father to son for generations.
  14. 16
    [intransitive] to change from one state to another
    pass from something to something: At this temperature, the mixture passes from a solid to a liquid state.


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