Word of the Day: mate

Word of the Day
July 22, 2016
mate (noun, verb)
/meɪt/  sound icon
 
I love going to the pub with my mates.
A mate is a husband or wife, a sexual partner, or one of a pair of animals brought together to breed. It is also one of a pair of anything and, in informal British and Australian English, mate is a really popular term that means 'friend' or 'buddy' and is also used as a term of address. As a verb, to mate means 'to bring animals together for breeding purposes' or 'to join or connect.'

 

Example sentences
 
It is important to find a mate who supports you in everything you do.
I am looking for a suitable mate to breed with my Dalmatian.
Daniel placed the second candlestick alongside its mate on the table.
Lara is going out with her mates tonight.
"All right, mate?" said Ben when he met Adam outside the cinema.
The bulldog's owner mated her with a dog of the same breed.
The engineers mated the telephone system to a computerized information system.

 

Additional information
 
Mate (pronounced mä′tā) is also a a really popular South American beverage and is an infusion made of the dried leaves of the mate tree. The dried leaves can be called yerba mate or simpy yerba.
 
Did you know?
 
Mate can also be used as part of a compound noun to indicate somebody who shares something. For example, in British English, a housemate or flatmate would be somebody you share a house or flat with, while a roommate is somebody you share a bedroom with. In US English, roommate can mean someone you share a room, house, or apartment with. Other common examples are teammate (someone who plays a sport on the same team as you) or classmate (someone who is in the same class as you).
 
Origin
 
The noun dates back to the 14th century and comes from the Middle Low German mate or gemate, which meant 'messmate, or someone you ate a meal with.' It replaced the broader Middle English word mette, which in turn came from the Old English gemetta messmate, meaning 'guest,' although they all have the same roots. The verb, meaning 'to rival,' dates from around 1500, and the meaning 'to marry or to pair (animals) for breeding,' appeared a bit later, near the end of the 16th century.
 
 
 
 
 
Mate in other languages
 
 
 
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