See more synonyms for parting on
  1. the act of a person or thing that parts.
  2. a division or separation.
  3. a place of division or separation.
  4. a departure or leave-taking.
  5. death.
  6. something that serves to part or separate things.
  7. Mineralogy. a fracture of a crystal along a plane determined by twinning or pressure rather than along a cleavage plane.
  8. Metallurgy. parting line.
  1. given, happening, taken, done, etc., at parting: a parting glance.
  2. of or relating to parting, leave-taking, departure, or death: parting words.
  3. ending or taking leave: the parting day.
  4. dying.
  5. dividing or separating.

Origin of parting

1250–1300; Middle English partyng (gerund). See part, -ing1, -ing2


  1. a portion or division of a whole that is separate or distinct; piece, fragment, fraction, or section; constituent: the rear part of the house; to glue the two parts together.
  2. an essential or integral attribute or quality: a sense of humor is part of a healthy personality.
  3. a section or division of a literary work.
  4. a portion, member, or organ of an animal body.
  5. any of a number of more or less equal quantities that compose a whole or into which a whole is divided: Use two parts sugar to one part cocoa.
  6. an allotted portion; share.
  7. Usually parts.
    1. a region, quarter, or district: a journey to foreign parts.
    2. a quality or attribute establishing the possessor as a person of importance or superior worth: Being both a diplomat and a successful businesswoman, she is widely regarded as a woman of parts.
  8. either of the opposing sides in a contest, question, agreement, etc.
  9. the dividing line formed in separating the hair of the head and combing it in different directions.
  10. a constituent piece of a machine or tool either included at the time of manufacture or set in place as a replacement for the original piece.
  11. Music.
    1. the written or printed matter extracted from the score that a single performer or section uses in the performance of concerted music: a horn part.
    2. a section or division of a composition: the allegro part of the first movement.
  12. participation, interest, or concern in something; role: The neighbors must have had some part in planning the surprise party.
  13. a person's share in or contribution to some action; duty, function, or office: You must do your part if we're to finish by tonight.
  14. a character or role acted in a play or sustained in real life.
verb (used with object)
  1. to divide (a thing) into parts; break; cleave; divide.
  2. to comb (the hair) away from a dividing line.
  3. to divide into shares; distribute in parts; apportion.
  4. to put or keep apart; separate: They parted the calves from the herd.
  5. Metallurgy.
    1. to separate (silver) from gold in refining.
    2. to cut (one part) away from a piece, as an end from a billet.
    3. to keep the surface of (a casting) separate from the sand of the mold.
  6. Obsolete. to leave.
verb (used without object)
  1. to be or become divided into parts; break or cleave: The oil tanker parted amidships.
  2. to go or come apart; separate, as two or more things.
  3. to go apart from or leave one another, as persons: We'll part no more.
  4. to be or become separated from something else (usually followed by from).
  5. Nautical. to break or become torn apart, as a cable.
  6. to depart.
  7. to die.
  1. partial; of a part: part owner.
  1. in part; partly: part black.
Verb Phrases
  1. part with, to give up (property, control, etc.); relinquish: to part with one's money.
  1. for one's part, as far as concerns one: For my part, you can do whatever you please.
  2. for the most part, with respect to the greatest part; on the whole; generally; usually; mostly: They are good students, for the most part.
  3. in good part,
    1. without offense; in a good-natured manner; amiably: She was able to take teasing in good part.
    2. to a great extent; largely: His success is in good part ascribable to dogged determination.
  4. in part, in some measure or degree; to some extent; partly; partially: The crop failure was due in part to unusual weather conditions.
  5. on the part of,
    1. so far as pertains to or concerns one: He expressed appreciation on the part of himself and his colleagues.
    2. as done or manifested by: attention on the part of the audience.
    Also on one's part.
  6. part and parcel, an essential, necessary, or integral part: Her love for her child was part and parcel of her life.
  7. part company,
    1. to bid farewell or go separate ways; leave one another.
    2. to dissolve a personal affiliation, relationship, etc., especially because of irreconcilable differences.
    3. to disagree.
  8. take part, to participate; share or partake: They refused to take part in any of the activities of the community.
  9. take someone's part, to align oneself with; support; defend: His parents took his part, even though he was obviously in the wrong.

Origin of part

before 1000; (noun) Middle English (< Old French < L), Old English < Latin part- (stem of pars) piece, portion; (v.) Middle English parten < Old French partir < Latin partīre, derivative of pars
Related formsmul·ti·part, adjectivesub·part, noun

Synonyms for part

See more synonyms for on
1. component, ingredient, division, sector. Part, piece, portion, segment, section, fraction, fragment refer to something that is less than the whole. Part is the general word: part of a house. A piece suggests a part which is itself a complete unit or it may mean an irregular fragment: a piece of pie; a piece of a broken vase. A portion is a part allotted or assigned to a person, purpose, etc.: a portion of food. A segment is often a part into which something separates naturally: a segment of an orange. Section suggests a relatively substantial, clearly separate part that fits closely with other parts to form a whole: a section of a fishing rod, a book. Fraction suggests a less substantial but still clearly delimited part, often separate from other parts: a fraction of his former income. Fragment suggests a broken, inconsequential, incomplete part, with irregular or imprecise outlines or boundaries: a fragment of broken pottery, of information. 6. apportionment, lot. 13. responsibility. 18. sever, sunder, dissociate, disconnect, disjoin, detach.

Antonyms for part

1. whole. 15. join. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for parting

Contemporary Examples of parting

Historical Examples of parting

  • "In truth, my father, I wished to avoid the pain of parting," rejoined Philæmon.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • At parting, she urged Eudora to share her apartment for the night.


    Lydia Maria Child

  • At the moment of parting he began to realize that he had undertaken a difficult task.

    Brave and Bold

    Horatio Alger

  • "And do say something cheerful, dear," pleaded Avice, at parting.

    The Spenders

    Harry Leon Wilson

  • Only Ambrose was, at parting for the night, obliged to ask him for the key of the gate.

    The Armourer's Prentices

    Charlotte M. Yonge

British Dictionary definitions for parting


  1. British the line of scalp showing when sections of hair are combed in opposite directionsUS, Canadian, and Austral equivalent: part
  2. the act of separating or the state of being separated
    1. a departure or leave-taking, esp one causing a final separation
    2. (as modifier)a parting embrace
  3. a place or line of separation or division
  4. chem a division of a crystal along a plane that is not a cleavage plane
  5. a euphemism for death
adjective (prenominal)
  1. literary departingthe parting day
  2. serving to divide or separate


  1. a piece or portion of a whole
  2. an integral constituent of somethingdancing is part of what we teach
    1. an amount less than the whole; bitthey only recovered part of the money
    2. (as modifier)an old car in part exchange for a new one
  3. one of several equal or nearly equal divisionsmix two parts flour to one part water
    1. an actor's role in a play
    2. the speech and actions which make up such a role
    3. a written copy of these
  4. a person's proper role or dutyeveryone must do his part
  5. (often plural) region; areayou're well known in these parts
  6. anatomy any portion of a larger structure
  7. a component that can be replaced in a machine, engine, etcspare parts
  8. US, Canadian and Australian the line of scalp showing when sections of hair are combed in opposite directionsBritish equivalent: parting
  9. music
    1. one of a number of separate melodic lines making up the texture of music
    2. one of such melodic lines, which is assigned to one or more instrumentalists or singersthe viola part; the soprano solo part
    3. such a line performed from a separately written or printed copySee part song
  10. for the most part generally
  11. for one's part as far as one is concerned
  12. in part to some degree; partly
  13. of many parts having many different abilities
  14. on the part of on behalf of
  15. part and parcel an essential ingredient
  16. play a part
    1. to pretend to be what one is not
    2. (foll by in)to have something to do (with); be instrumental (in)to play a part in the king's downfall
  17. take in good part to respond to (teasing) with good humour
  18. take part in to participate in
  19. take someone's part to support someone in an argument
  1. to divide or separate from one another; take or come apartto part the curtains; the seams parted when I washed the dress
  2. to go away or cause to go away from one another; stop or cause to stop seeing each otherthe couple parted amicably
  3. (intr foll by from) to leave; say goodbye (to)
  4. (intr foll by with) to relinquish, esp reluctantlyI couldn't part with my teddy bear
  5. (tr foll by from) to cause to relinquish, esp reluctantlyhe's not easily parted from his cash
  6. (intr) to split; separatethe path parts here
  7. (tr) to arrange (the hair) in such a way that a line of scalp is left showing
  8. (intr) a euphemism for die 1 (def. 1)
  9. (intr) archaic to depart
  10. part company
    1. to end a friendship or association, esp as a result of a quarrel; separatethey were in partnership, but parted company last year
    2. (foll by with)to leave; go away from; be separated from
  1. to some extent; partly
See also parts

Word Origin for part

C13: via Old French from Latin partīre to divide, from pars a part
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 parting

"action of going away," c.1300, verbal noun from part (v.). As "separation of persons," early 14c.



mid-13c., "division, portion of a whole," from Old French part "share, portion; character; power, dominion; side, way, path," from Latin partem (nominative pars) "a part, piece, a share, a division; a party or faction; a part of the body; a fraction; a function, office," related to portio "share, portion," from PIE root *pere- "to assign, allot" (cf. Greek peprotai "it has been granted," Sanskrit purtam "reward," Hittite parshiya- "fraction, part").

It has replaced native deal (n.) in most senses. Theatrical sense (late 15c.) is from an actor's "share" in a performance (The Latin plural partis was used in the same sense). Meaning "the parting of the hair" is 1890, American English.

As an adjective from 1590s. Late Old English part "part of speech" did not survive and the modern word is considered a separate borrowing. Phrase for the most part is from late 14c. To take part "participate" is from late 14c.



c.1200, "to divide into parts; separate oneself," from Old French partir "to divide, separate" (10c.), from Latin partire, partere "to share, part, distribute, divide," from pars (see part (n.)).

Sense of "to separate (someone from someone else)" is from early 14c.; that of "to take leave" is from early 15c. Meaning "to separate the hair" is attested from 1610s. Related: Parted; parting. To part with "surrender" is from c.1300.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

parting in Medicine


  1. A portion, division, piece, or segment of a whole.
  2. Any of several equal portions or fractions that can constitute a whole or into which a whole can be divided.
  3. An organ, member, or other division of an organism.
  4. An anatomical part; pars.
  5. parts The external genitalia.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with parting


In addition to the idioms beginning with part

  • part and parcel
  • part company
  • parting of the ways
  • parting shot
  • part with
  • party line

also see:

  • best part of
  • better half (part of)
  • discretion is the better part of valor
  • do one's bit (part)
  • fool and his money are soon parted
  • for one's part
  • for the most part
  • in good part
  • in part
  • take part
  • take someone's part
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.