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piper

[pahy-per]
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noun
  1. a person who plays on a pipe.
  2. a bagpiper.
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Idioms
  1. pay the piper,
    1. to pay the cost of something.
    2. to bear the unfavorable consequences of one's actions or pleasures: Someday he'll have to pay the piper for all that gambling.
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Origin of piper

before 1000; Middle English; Old English pīpere. See pipe1, -er1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for pay the piper

piper

noun
  1. a person who plays a pipe or bagpipes
  2. pay the piper and call the tune to bear the cost of an undertaking and control it
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Piper

noun
  1. John. 1903–92, British artist. An official war artist in World War II, he is known esp for his watercolours of bombed churches and his stained glass in Coventry Cathedral
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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 pay the piper

piper

n.

Old English pipere, agent noun from pipe (v.). As a kind of fish, from c.1600. Expression pay the piper recorded from 1680s.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

pay the piper in Culture

pay the piper

To pay the consequences for self-indulgent behavior: “If you stay up late at night to watch TV, in the morning you will have to pay the piper.”

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The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Idioms and Phrases with pay the piper

pay the piper

see under call the tune.

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piper

see call the tune (pay the piper).

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