Meaning of “pat” in the English Dictionary

"pat" in British English

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patverb [ T ]

uk /pæt/ us /pæt/ -tt-

C2 to touch someone or something gently and usually repeatedly with the hand flat:

He patted my head/patted me on the head affectionately.
I bent down to pat the little puppy.

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Phrasal verb(s)

patnoun [ C ]

uk /pæt/ us /pæt/


uk /pæt/ us /pæt/ usually disapproving

(Definition of “pat” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"pat" in American English

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patverb [ T ]

us /pæt/ -tt-

pat verb [ T ] (TOUCH)

to touch someone or something lightly and repeatedly with an open hand:

He patted me on the shoulder.
Pat the vegetables dry with a paper towel.

patnoun [ C ]

us /pæt/

pat noun [ C ] (PIECE)

pat noun [ C ] (TOUCH)

a light touch made with your open hand

patadjective, adverb [ not gradable ]

us /pæt/ usually disapproving

pat adjective, adverb [ not gradable ] (WITHOUT THINKING)

(esp. of an answer) having been already prepared and therefore said without thinking much about the question:

You’ve got a pat response to every question that comes along.

(Definition of “pat” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)