See more synonyms for parceling on
  1. the act of separating or dividing into parts and distributing; allotting or apportioning.
  2. Nautical. strips of canvas, usually coated with tar, for wrapping around a rope to protect it.

Origin of parceling

late Middle English word dating back to 1400–50; see origin at parcel, -ing1
Related formsun·par·cel·ing, adjective


[pahr-suh l]
  1. an object, article, container, or quantity of something wrapped or packed up; small package; bundle.
  2. a quantity or unit of something, as of a commodity for sale; lot.
  3. a group, collection, or assemblage of persons or things.
  4. a distinct, continuous portion or tract of land.
  5. a part, portion, or fragment.
verb (used with object), par·celed, par·cel·ing or (especially British) par·celled, par·cel·ling.
  1. to divide into or distribute in parcels or portions (usually followed by out).
  2. to make into a parcel or wrap as a parcel.
  3. Nautical. to cover or wrap (a rope) with strips of canvas.
  1. Archaic. in part; partially.

Origin of parcel

1275–1325; Middle English < Middle French parcelle < Late Latin *particella, fresh formation for Latin particula; see particle, passel
Related formsun·par·celed, adjectiveun·par·celled, adjectiveun·par·cel·ling, adjective

Synonyms for parcel

See more synonyms for on
1. See package. 3. batch, assortment. 6. mete, apportion, deal, allot. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for parceling

Contemporary Examples of parceling

Historical Examples of parceling

British Dictionary definitions for parceling


  1. something wrapped up; package
  2. a group of people or things having some common characteristic
  3. a quantity of some commodity offered for sale; lot
  4. a distinct portion of land
  5. an essential part of something (esp in the phrase part and parcel)
verb -cels, -celling or -celled or US -cels, -celing or -celed (tr)
  1. (often foll by up) to make a parcel of; wrap up
  2. (often foll by out) to divide (up) into portions
  3. nautical to bind strips of canvas around (a rope)
  1. an archaic word for partly

Word Origin for parcel

C14: from Old French parcelle, from Latin particula particle
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

Word Origin and History for parceling



"to divide into small portions," early 15c. (with out), from parcel (n.). Related: Parceled; parcelled; parceling; parcelling.



late 14c., "a portion of something, a part" (sense preserved in phrase parcel of land, c.1400), from Old French parcele "small piece, particle, parcel," from Vulgar Latin *particella, diminutive of Latin particula "small part, little bit," itself a diminutive of pars (genitive partis) "part" (see part (n.)).

Meaning "package" is first recorded 1640s, earlier "a quantity of goods in a package" (mid-15c.), from late 14c. sense of "an amount or quantity of anything." The expression part and parcel (early 15c.) also preserves the older sense; both words mean the same, the multiplicity is for emphasis.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with parceling


In addition to the idiom beginning with parcel

  • parcel out

also see:

  • part and parcel
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.