Word of the Day: patch

Word of the Day
June 21, 2016
patch (noun, verb)
/pætʃ/  sound icon
A heart-shaped patch on a pair of jeans
A patch is a piece of material used to repair something or to cover an injured part of the body, usually an eye. It is also a small area or piece of something. It can also be a piece of material added to clothing for decoration. In British English, a patch is also a period of time. As a verb patch means 'to fix or restore something in a quick way' and 'to mend something, such as clothing, with a patch.'


Example sentences
Tom sewed a patch over the hole in his jeans.
Agatha had to wear a patch over her eye while the injury healed.
In the summer, Jon and Karen often sit on the patch of grass in front of their house.
The business is going through a bit of a quiet patch at the moment; we don't have much work.
Helen tore a hole in her skirt and realized she would have to patch it.


Multi-word forms
patch up: to fix something quickly or temporarily. Example: "The car was in a bad state, but the mechanic managed to patch it up so that the family could continue their journey." Patch up can also be used to talk about giving someone medical treatment. Example: "When I fell off my bike, I had cuts and bruises everywhere, but the doctors at the hospital patched me up in no time."
patch things up: to make up after an argument. Example: "Karen and Steve really fell out, but they've patched things up now."
patch someone through: to connect someone to another telephone. Example: "Sorry, Isobel isn't in the office at the moment. Would you like me to patch you through to her cell phone?"
Did you know?
Patch, both as a verb and a noun, also has a use in computing. As a noun, it is a short set of instructions to correct a problem or improve something in a computer program and, as a verb, it means 'to correct or improve a program by applying a patch.'
Other forms
patcher (noun), patchable (adjective)
Patch first appeared, as a noun, in the late 14th century. It comes from the Middle English word pacche, which is similar to the Old Provençal word pedas, meaning 'piece to cover a hole.' Pedas comes from the Vulgar Latin word pedaceum, which meant 'something measured,' and came from the Medieval Latin verb pedāre, which was to measure in feet.
Patch in other languages
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