[ pas-ing, pah-sing ]
/ ˈpæs ɪŋ, ˈpɑ sɪŋ /



surpassingly; exceedingly; very.


the act of a person or thing that passes or causes something to pass.
a means or place of passage.


    in passing, by the way; incidentally: The speaker mentioned his latest book in passing.

Origin of passing

Middle English word dating back to 1275–1325; see origin at pass, -ing2, -ing1

Related forms

pass·ing·ly, adverbpass·ing·ness, nounun·pass·ing, adjective

Definition for passing (2 of 2)

Origin of pass

1175–1225; (v.) Middle English passen < Old French passer < Vulgar Latin *passāre, derivative of Latin passus step, pace1; (noun) Middle English; in part < Middle French passe (noun derivative of passer), in part noun derivative of passen

Related forms

pass·less, adjectiveout·pass, verb (used with object)sub·pass, noun

Synonym study

35, 76b, 79. See die1. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for passing

British Dictionary definitions for passing (1 of 2)


/ (ˈpɑːsɪŋ) /


transitory or momentarya passing fancy
cursory or casual in action or mannera passing reference

adverb, adjective

archaic to an extreme degreethe events were passing strange


a place where or means by which one may pass, cross, ford, etc
a euphemism for death
in passing by the way; incidentallyhe mentioned your visit in passing

British Dictionary definitions for passing (2 of 2)


/ (pɑːs) /




bridge a call indicating that a player has no bid to make

Word Origin for pass

C13: from Old French passer to pass, surpass, from Latin passūs step, pace 1
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

Medicine definitions for passing


[ păs ]


To go across; go through.
To cause to move into a certain position.
To cease to exist; die.
To be voided from the body.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with passing


In addition to the idioms beginning with pass

  • pass away
  • pass by
  • pass for
  • pass muster
  • pass off
  • pass on
  • pass one's lips
  • pass out
  • pass over
  • pass the buck
  • pass the hat
  • pass the time
  • pass the torch
  • pass through one's mind
  • pass up
  • pass with flying colors

also see:

  • bring about (to pass)
  • come about (to pass)
  • cross (pass through) one's mind
  • head someone off (at the pass)
  • in passing
  • make (take) a pass at
  • ships that pass in the night
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.