- The definition of a couple is two items of a similar kind or two people in a romantic relationship.
- An example of a couple is a salt and pepper shaker set.
- An example of a couple is a husband and wife.
- Couple means to link together or to pair up.
An example of to couple is to put students in groups of two.
Salt and pepper shakers are a couple.
- anything joining two things together; bond; link
- two things or persons of the same sort that are somehow associated
- two people, esp. a man and woman, who are engaged, married, or joined as partners, as in a dance or game
- Informal an indefinite small number; a few [a couple of ideas]: now often used with adjectival force, omitting the of: a couple cups of coffee
- Elec. two dissimilar metals or alloys placed in electrical contact with each other to create a galvanic or thermoelectric current; voltaic couple
- Mech. two equal forces producing rotation by moving in parallel but opposite directions
Origin of coupleMiddle English ; from Old French cople ; from Classical Latin copula, a band, link: see copula
transitive verbcoupled, coupling
- to join together by fastening or by association; link; connect
- Archaic to join in marriage
- Elec. to join (two or more circuits) by a common magnetic or electric field or by direct connection
Origin of coupleME couplen < OFr copler < L copulare < copula
- to come together; unite
- to unite in sexual intercourse; copulate
- Two items of the same kind; a pair.
- Something that joins or connects two things together; a link.
- (used with a sing. or pl. verb)a. Two people united, as by betrothal or marriage.b. Two people together.
- Informal A few; several: a couple of days.
- Physics A pair of forces of equal magnitude acting in parallel but opposite directions, capable of causing rotation but not translation.
verbcou·pled, cou·pling, cou·ples
- To link together; connect: coupled her refusal with an explanation.
- Electricity To link (two circuits or currents), as by magnetic induction.
- Archaic To join together in marriage; marry.
- To form pairs; join.
- To unite sexually; have sexual intercourse.
- To join chemically.
Origin of coupleMiddle English, from Old French, from Latin cōpula, bond, pair. Usage Note: When used to refer to two people who function socially as a unit, as in a married couple, the word couple may take either a singular or a plural verb, depending on whether the members are considered individually or collectively: The couple were married last week. Only one couple was left on the dance floor. When a pronoun follows, they and their are more common than it and its: The couple decided to spend their (less commonly its) vacation in Florida. Using a singular verb and a plural pronoun, as in The couple wants their children to go to college, is widely considered to be incorrect. Care should be taken that the verb and pronoun agree in number: The couple want their children to go to college. • Although the phrase a couple of has been well established in English since before the Renaissance, modern critics have sometimes maintained that a couple of is too inexact to be appropriate in formal writing. But the inexactitude of a couple of may serve a useful purpose, suggesting that the writer is indifferent to the precise number of items involved. Thus the sentence She lives only a couple of miles away implies not only that the distance is short but that its exact measure is unimportant. This usage should be considered unobjectionable on all levels of style. • The of in the phrase a couple of is often dropped in speech, but this omission is usually considered a mistake, especially in formal contexts. Three-fourths of the Usage Panel finds the sentence I read a couple books over vacation to be unacceptable; however, another 20 percent of the Panel finds the sentence to be acceptable in informal speech and writing.
- Two partners in a romantic or sexual relationship.
- Two of the same kind connected or considered together.
- (informal) A small number.
- One of the pairs of plates of two metals which compose a voltaic battery, called a voltaic couple or galvanic couple.
- (physics) Two forces that are equal in magnitude but opposite in direction (acting along parallel lines), thus creating the turning effect of a torque or moment.
- (architecture) A couple-close.
- I'll go in couples with her.
- The traditional and still most broadly accepted usage of couple is as a noun, in which case it is followed by "of" when used to mean "two", as in "a couple of people". In this usage, "a couple of" is equivalent to "a pair of". Couple is also used informally as a determiner (see definition below), in which case it is not followed by "of". In this usage, "a couple" is roughly equivalent to "a few". Usage manuals advise that couple be used only as a noun and not as a determiner in formal writing.
- "A couple of things" or people may be used to mean two of them, but it is also often used to mean any small number.
- The farm is a couple of miles off the main highway [=a few miles away].
- We’re going out to a restaurant with a couple of friends [=two friends].
- Wait a couple of minutes [=two minutes or more].
- (informal) A small number of.
(third-person singular simple present couples, present participle coupling, simple past and past participle coupled)