[ pawz ]
/ pɔz /


verb (used without object), paused, paus·ing.

to make a brief stop or delay; wait; hesitate: He paused at the edge of the pool for a moment. I'll pause in my lecture so we can all get some coffee.
to dwell or linger (usually followed by on or upon): to pause upon a particular point.


    give pause, to cause to hesitate or be unsure, as from surprise or doubt: These frightening statistics give us pause.

Origin of pause

1400–50; (noun) Middle English < Latin pausa < Greek paûsis a halt, equivalent to paú(ein) to stop + -sis -sis; (v.) derivative of the noun

Related forms

Can be confused

pause paws pores pours Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for pause

British Dictionary definitions for pause


/ (pɔːz) /

verb (intr)

to cease an action temporarily; stop
to hesitate; delayshe replied without pausing


a temporary stop or rest, esp in speech or action; short break
prosody another word for caesura
Also called: fermata music a continuation of a note or rest beyond its normal lengthUsual symbol:
give pause to to cause to hesitate

Derived Forms

pausal, adjectivepauser, nounpausing, noun, adjective

Word Origin for pause

C15: from Latin pausa pause, from Greek pausis, from pauein to halt
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 pause


[ pôz ]


A temporary stop or cessation.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with pause


see give pause.

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