stand pat


2 [pat]
exactly to the point or purpose; apt; opportune: a pat solution to a problem.
excessively glib; unconvincingly facile: His answers were too pat to suit the examining board.
learned, known, or mastered perfectly or exactly: to have something pat.
exactly or perfectly.
aptly; opportunely.
down pat, mastered or learned perfectly: If you're an actor, you have to get your lines down pat. Also, down cold.
stand pat,
to cling or hold firm to one's decision, policy, or beliefs: The government must stand pat in its policy.
Poker. to play a hand as dealt, without drawing other cards.

1570–80; orig. adverbial use of pat1, as obsolete to hit pat to strike accurately

patness, noun
patter, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
pat1 (pæt)
vb , pats, patting, patted
1.  to hit (something) lightly with the palm of the hand or some other flat surface: to pat a ball
2.  to slap (a person or animal) gently, esp on the back, as an expression of affection, congratulation, etc
3.  (tr) to shape, smooth, etc, with a flat instrument or the palm
4.  (intr) to walk or run with light footsteps
5.  informal pat someone on the back to congratulate or encourage someone
6.  a light blow with something flat
7.  a gentle slap
8.  a small mass of something: a pat of butter
9.  the sound made by a light stroke or light footsteps
10.  informal pat on the back a gesture or word indicating approval or encouragement
[C14: perhaps imitative]

pat2 (pæt)
1.  Also: off pat exactly or fluently memorized or mastered: he recited it pat
2.  opportunely or aptly
3.  stand pat
 a.  chiefly (US), (Canadian) to refuse to abandon a belief, decision, etc
 b.  (in poker, etc) to play without adding new cards to the hand dealt
4.  exactly right for the occasion; apt: a pat reply
5.  too exactly fitting; glib: a pat answer to a difficult problem
6.  exactly right: a pat hand in poker
[C17: perhaps adverbial use (``with a light stroke'') of pat1]

pat3 (pæt)
informal (Austral) on one's pat alone; on one's own
[C20: rhyming slang, from Pat Malone]

Pat (pæt)
an informal name for an Irishman
[from Patrick]

stand pat
1.  poker to refuse the right to change any of one's cards; keep one's hand unchanged
2.  to resist change or remain unchanged

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

c.1400, "a blow, stroke," perhaps originally imitative of the sound of patting. The verb "to tap or strike lightly" is attested from c.1600, and the noun "light tap with hand" is from c.1804. The noun sense "that which is formed by patting" (as in pat of butter) is 1754, probably from the verb. The nursery
rhyme phrase pat-a-cake is known from 1874.

"apt, suitably," 1578, perhaps a special use of pat (n.) in sense of "hitting" the mark. The adj. is 1638, from the adverb.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Abbreviations & Acronyms
point after touchdown
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

stand pat

Refuse to change one's position or opinion, as in We're going to stand pat on this amendment to the bylaws. This expression may be derived from the verb pat in the sense of "strike firmly and accurately." [Late 1800s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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