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paper

[pey-per] /ˈpeɪ pər/
noun
1.
a substance made from wood pulp, rags, straw, or other fibrous material, usually in thin sheets, used to bear writing or printing, for wrapping things, etc.
2.
a piece, sheet, or leaf of this.
3.
something resembling this substance, as papyrus.
4.
a written or printed document or the like.
5.
stationery; writing paper.
6.
a newspaper or journal.
7.
an essay, article, or dissertation on a particular topic:
a paper on early Mayan artifacts.
8.
Often, papers. a document establishing or verifying identity, status, or the like:
citizenship papers.
9.
negotiable notes, bills, etc., as commercial paper or paper money:
Only silver, please, no paper.
10.
a promissory note.
11.
papers.
  1. Nautical, ship's papers.
  2. rolling paper.
12.
14.
a sheet or card of paper with pins or needles stuck through it in rows.
15.
a set of questions for an examination, an individual set of written answers to them, or any written piece of schoolwork.
16.
Slang. a free pass to an entertainment.
verb (used with object)
17.
to cover with wallpaper or apply wallpaper to:
They papered the bedroom last summer.
18.
to line or cover with paper.
19.
to distribute handbills, posters, etc., throughout:
to paper a neighborhood with campaign literature.
20.
to fold, enclose, or wrap in paper.
21.
to supply with paper.
22.
Informal. to deluge with documents, especially those requiring one to comply with certain technical procedures, as a means of legal harassment:
He papered the plaintiff to force a settlement.
23.
Slang. to fill (a theater or the like) with spectators by giving away free tickets or passes.
24.
Archaic.
  1. to write or set down on paper.
  2. to describe in writing.
verb (used without object)
25.
to apply wallpaper to walls.
adjective
26.
made of paper or paperlike material:
a paper bag.
27.
paperlike; thin, flimsy, or frail.
28.
of, relating to, or noting routine clerical duties.
29.
pertaining to or carried on by means of letters, articles, books, etc.:
a paper war.
30.
written or printed on paper.
31.
existing in theory or principle only and not in reality:
paper profits.
32.
indicating the first event of a series, as a wedding anniversary.
33.
Slang. including many patrons admitted on free passes, as an audience for a theatrical performance:
It's a paper house tonight.
Verb phrases
34.
paper over, to patch up or attempt to conceal (a difference, disagreement, etc.) so as to preserve a friendship, present a unified opinion, etc.:
to paper over a dispute.
Idioms
35.
on paper,
  1. in written or printed form.
  2. in theory rather than in practice.
  3. existing only in a preliminary state; in a plan or design:
    The university building program is still only on paper.
Origin
1325-1375
1325-75; Middle English papire < Latin papȳrus papyrus
Related forms
paperless, adjective
paperlike, adjective
repaper, verb (used with object)
unpapered, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for papers
  • The claim was echoed in headlines in several national papers.
  • The process adds a considerable amount of water to the papers.
  • Today, the number of published papers doubles about every ten years.
  • Graphic photos of bodies lying in pools of blood were plastered all over the papers.
  • Above all, he revolutionized the way papers were distributed.
British Dictionary definitions for papers

paper

/ˈpeɪpə/
noun
1.
a substance made from cellulose fibres derived from rags, wood, etc, often with other additives, and formed into flat thin sheets suitable for writing on, decorating walls, wrapping, etc related adjective papyraceous
2.
a single piece of such material, esp if written or printed on
3.
(usually pl) documents for establishing the identity of the bearer; credentials
4.
(pl) Also called ship's papers. official documents relating to the ownership, cargo, etc, of a ship
5.
(pl) collected diaries, letters, etc
7.
8.
a lecture or short published treatise on a specific subject
9.
a short essay, as by a student
10.
  1. a set of written examination questions
  2. the student's answers
11.
(commerce) See commercial paper
12.
(theatre, slang) a free ticket
13.
on paper, in theory, as opposed to fact: it was a good idea on paper, but failed in practice
adjective
14.
made of paper: paper cups do not last long
15.
thin like paper: paper walls
16.
(prenominal) existing only as recorded on paper but not yet in practice: paper profits, paper expenditure
17.
taking place in writing: paper battles
verb
18.
to cover (walls) with wallpaper
19.
(transitive) to cover or furnish with paper
20.
(transitive) (theatre, slang) to fill (a performance) by giving away free tickets (esp in the phrase paper the house)
See also paper over
Derived Forms
paperer, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Latin papyrus
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for papers

paper

n.

mid-14c., from Anglo-French paper, Old French papier "paper, document," from Latin papyrus "paper, paper made of papyrus stalks" (see papyrus).

Meaning "paper money" attested from 1722. As shortened form of newspaper, first attested 1640s. In plural, "collection of papers to establish one's identity, credentials, etc.," it is attested from 1680s. Paper chase is British slang from 1932.

v.

1590s, "to write down on paper," from paper (n.). Meaning "to decorate a room with paper hangings" is from 1774. Related: Papered; papering. Verbal phrase paper over in the figurative sense is from 1955, from the notion of hiding plaster cracks with wallaper.

adj.

1590s, from paper (n.). Figurative of something flimsy or unsubstantial from 1716. Paper tiger (1952) translates Chinese tsuh lao fu, popularized by Mao Zedong. Paper doll attested from 1849; paper plate from 1723.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for papers

paper

noun
  1. A forged or worthless check (1850+)
  2. Apass or free ticket; annie oakley (Theater)
  3. Apacket of narcotics; bag (1960s+ Narcotics)
  4. Money: pass him paper in exchange for goods
verb
  1. To use or pass counterfeit money or worthless checks; Lay Paper: papered Queens and Long Island with bum checks (1925+)
  2. To give out free tickets in order to get a large audience: The show was not doing well, so they papered the theater (1879+ Theater)
  3. To write traffic and parking tickets: The captain complained that the patrolmen were not papering enough (1960s+ Police)
Related Terms

bad paper, on paper, peddle one's papers, walking papers


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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papers in the Bible

The expression in the Authorized Version (Isa. 19:7), "the paper reeds by the brooks," is in the Revised Version more correctly "the meadows by the Nile." The words undoubtedly refer to a grassy place on the banks of the Nile fit for pasturage. In 2 John 1:12 the word is used in its proper sense. The material so referred to was manufactured from the papyrus, and hence its name. The papyrus (Heb. gome) was a kind of bulrush (q.v.). It is mentioned by Job (8:11) and Isaiah (35:7). It was used for many purposes. This plant (Papyrus Nilotica) is now unknown in Egypt; no trace of it can be found. The unaccountable disappearance of this plant from Egypt was foretold by Isaiah (19:6, 7) as a part of the divine judgment on that land. The most extensive papyrus growths now known are in the marshes at the northern end of the lake of Merom.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Idioms and Phrases with papers

paper

In addition to the idiom beginning with
paper
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Difficulty index for paper

All English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for papers

10
12
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Quotes with papers

Nearby words for papers