parallel Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo
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Meaning of “parallel” in the English Dictionary

"parallel" in British English

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paralleladjective

uk   /ˈpær.ə.lel/  us   /ˈper.ə.lel/
  • parallel adjective (POSITION)

If two or more lines, streets, etc. are parallel, the distance between them is the same all along their length: Draw a pair of parallel lines. Hills Road is parallel to Mill Road.

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  • parallel adjective (SIMILAR)

C2 used to describe an event or situation that happens at the same time as and/or is similar to another one: a parallel example Parallel experiments are being conducted in Rome, Paris and London.

parallelnoun

uk   /ˈpær.ə.lel/  us   /ˈper.ə.lel/
  • parallel noun (SIMILARITY)

C2 [C] something very similar to something else, or a similarity between two things: I'm trying to see if there are any obvious parallels between the two cases. It would be easy to draw (= make) a parallel between the city's history and that of its theatres.
have no parallel (also be without parallel)
If something has no parallel or is without parallel, there is nothing similar to it or of the same high quality as it: These beautiful African churches have no parallel in Europe.

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  • parallel noun (POSITION)

parallel (line)
a line that is always at the same distance from another line
one of a number of imaginary lines around the earth always at the same distance from the equator: Cambridge lies near the 52nd parallel.
in parallel specialized
If two or more parts of an electrical system are in parallel, they are arranged in a way that means they both receive the same amount of electricity.
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parallelverb [T]

uk   /ˈpær.ə.lel/  us   /ˈper.ə.lel/

paralleladverb

uk   /ˈpær.ə.lel/  us   /ˈper.ə.lel/
in a position that is always the same distance from something else: It's a quiet street running (= positioned) parallel to the main road.
(Definition of parallel from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"parallel" in American English

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paralleladjective

 us   /ˈpær·əˌlel, -ləl/
  • parallel adjective (POSITION)

geometry [not gradable] (of two or more straight lines) being the same distance apart along all their length: The wood was marked with parallel dark bands.
  • parallel adjective (SIMILARITY)

similar or matching: Parallel experiments are being conducted in Europe and the United States.
parallel
adverb [not gradable]  us   /ˈpær·əˌlel, -ləl/
Maple Street runs parallel to State Street.
parallel
verb [T]  us   /ˈpær·əˌlel, -ləl/
The highway parallels the river for about 20 miles.

parallelnoun [C]

 us   /ˈpær·əˌlel, -ləl/
  • parallel noun [C] (SIMILARITY)

something very similar to something else, or a similarity between two things: There’s an incredible parallel between the talking blues of 50 years ago and today’s rap music. The black experience in America has been without parallel in the experience of other peoples.
  • parallel noun [C] (POSITION)

earth science one of the imaginary latitude lines around the earth that are parallel to the equator: the 40th parallel
parallel
verb [T]  us   /ˈpær·əˌlel, -ləl/
Her account of the incident closely parallels what others have reported.
(Definition of parallel from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)

"parallel" in Business English

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paralleladjective

uk   us   /ˈpærəlel/
ECONOMICS, COMMERCE used to describe products that are bought in one country in an unofficial way and then sold more cheaply than usual in a different country: Brandowners are not entirely opposed to parallel trade. The government has adopted a labelling policy which requires distributors of parallel goods to label the origins of the goods.
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IT involving two or more computer processes happening at one time: Groups of workstations act in parallel.
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(Definition of parallel from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“parallel” in Business English

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