party

If you have a party, you invite people who will likely get along and like each other. If you join a political party, you choose the one whose members share your views.

Party comes from part, which means "a division in the whole." You can see this in political parties: the groups that make up the whole of voters in a nation. Party also means "person or group," which we are reminded of at restaurants when asked, "How many are in your party?" This is how party as in "a social gathering" or as a verb — the act of enjoying yourself at such a gathering — came about.

Definitions of party
  1. noun
    an occasion on which people can assemble for social interaction and entertainment
    “he planned a party to celebrate Bastille Day”
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    bash, brawl, do
    an uproarious party
    birthday party
    a party held on the anniversary of someone's birth
    bun-fight, bunfight
    (Briticism) a grand formal party on an important occasion
    ceilidh
    an informal social gathering at which there is Scottish or Irish folk music and singing and folk dancing and story telling
    cocktail party
    an afternoon party at which cocktails are served
    dance
    a party for social dancing
    feast, fete, fiesta
    an elaborate party (often outdoors)
    house party
    a party lasting over one or more nights at a large house
    jolly
    a happy party
    tea party
    a party at which tea is served
    whist drive
    a progressive whist party
    ball, formal
    a lavish dance requiring formal attire
    barn dance
    a dance party featuring country dancing
    hop, record hop
    an informal dance where popular music is played
    rave
    a dance party that lasts all night and electronically synthesized music is played
    luau
    an elaborate Hawaiian feast or party (especially one accompanied by traditional foods and entertainment)
    potlatch
    a ceremonial feast held by some Indians of the northwestern coast of North America (as in celebrating a marriage or a new accession) in which the host gives gifts to tribesmen and others to display his superior wealth (sometimes, formerly, to his own impoverishment)
    type of:
    affair, function, occasion, social function, social occasion
    a vaguely specified social event
  2. noun
    a group of people gathered together for pleasure
    “she joined the party after dinner”
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    shindig, shindy
    a large and noisy party of people
    dance
    a party of people assembled for dancing
    mask, masque, masquerade, masquerade party
    a party of guests wearing costumes and masks
    dinner, dinner party
    a party of people assembled to have dinner together
    reception
    a formal party of people; as after a wedding
    open house
    an informal party of people with hospitality for all comers
    housewarming
    a party of people assembled to celebrate moving into a new home
    soiree
    a party of people assembled in the evening (usually at a private house)
    fete champetre, garden party, lawn party
    a party of people assembled for social interaction out of doors
    shower
    a party of friends assembled to present gifts (usually of a specified kind) to a person
    smoker, stag party
    a party for men only (or one considered suitable for men only)
    hen party
    a party for women only
    slumber party
    an overnight party of girls who dress in nightclothes and pass the night talking
    mixer, sociable, social
    a party of people assembled to promote sociability and communal activity
    wedding, wedding party
    a party of people at a wedding
    reunion
    a party of former associates who have come together again
    fancy-dress ball, masked ball, masquerade ball
    a ball at which guests wear costumes and masks
    ball
    the people assembled at a lavish formal dance
    banquet, feast
    a ceremonial dinner party for many people
    beanfeast
    an annual dinner party given by an employer for the employees
    at home
    a reception held in your own home
    levee
    a formal reception of visitors or guests (as at a royal court)
    tea
    a reception or party at which tea is served
    wedding reception
    a reception for wedding guests held after the wedding
    musical soiree, soiree musicale
    a soiree assembled for the purpose of listening to music
    bachelor party
    stag party held for a bachelor (usually on the night before he is married)
    type of:
    social affair, social gathering
    a gathering for the purpose of promoting fellowship
  3. noun
    a band of people associated temporarily in some activity
    “they organized a party to search for food”
    synonyms: company
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    fatigue party
    a group of soldiers on fatigue duty
    landing party
    a part of a ship's company organized for special duties ashore
    party to the action, party to the transaction
    a party of people taking a role in legal proceedings
    rescue party
    a party of rescuers
    search party
    a party of people to search for someone
    stretcher party
    a party of people with stretchers to carry an injured person
    war party
    a band of warriors who raid or fight an enemy (used especially of Native Americans)
    type of:
    band, circle, lot, set
    an unofficial association of people or groups
  4. verb
    have or participate in a party
    “The students were partying all night before the exam”
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    rave
    participate in an all-night techno dance party
    type of:
    celebrate, fete
    have a celebration
  5. noun
    an organization to gain political power
    “in 1992 Perot tried to organize a third party at the national level”
    synonyms: political party
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    American Labor Party
    a former political party in the United States; formed in 1936 in New York when labor and liberals bolted the Democratic Party
    American Party, Know-Nothing Party
    a former political party in the United States; active in the 1850s to keep power out of the hands of immigrants and Roman Catholics
    Anti-Masonic Party
    a former political party in the United States; founded in 1825 in opposition to Freemasonry in public affairs
    Black Panthers
    a militant Black political party founded in 1965 to end political dominance by Whites
    Communist Party
    a political party that actively advocates a communist form of government; in Communist countries it is the sole political party of the state
    Conservative Party
    a political party (especially in Great Britain or Australia) that believes in the importance of a capitalist economy with private ownership rather than state control
    Constitutional Union Party
    a former political party in the United States; formed in 1859 by former Whigs who hoped to preserve the Union
    Democratic Party
    the older of two major political parties in the United States
    Democratic-Republican Party
    a former major political party in the United States in the early 19th century; opposed the old Federalist party; favored a strict interpretation of the constitution in order to limit the powers of the federal government
    Farmer-Labor Party
    a former minor political party in the United States in the early 20th century
    American Federalist Party, Federal Party, Federalist Party
    a major political party in the United States in the early 19th century; founded by Alexander Hamilton; favored a strong centralized government
    Free Soil Party
    a former political party in the United States; formed in 1848 to oppose the extension of slavery into the territories; merged with the Liberty Party in 1848
    Gironde
    the French moderate political party that was in power (1791-1793) during the French Revolution
    Green Party
    an environmentalist political party
    Greenback Party
    a former political party in the United States; organized in 1874; opposed any reduction in the amount of paper money in circulation
    Guomindang, Kuomintang
    the political party founded in 1911 by Sun Yat-sen; it governed China under Chiang Kai-shek from 1928 until 1949 when the Communists took power and subsequently was the official ruling party of Taiwan
    labor party, labour party
    a left-of-center political party formed to represent the interest of ordinary working people
    Liberal Democrat Party
    a political party in Great Britain; formerly the Liberal Party; advocates reforms and improvement of the conditions of working people
    Liberal Party
    a political party in Australia, Canada, and other nations, and formerly in Great Britain
    Liberty Party
    a former political party in the United States; formed in 1839 to oppose the practice of slavery; merged with the Free Soil Party in 1848
    Militant Tendency
    a Trotskyist political organization in Great Britain set up in 1964 inside the Labour Party
    National Socialist German Workers' Party, Nazi Party
    the political party founded in Germany in 1919 and brought to power by Hitler in 1933
    People's Party, Populist Party
    a former political party in the United States; formed in 1891 to advocate currency expansion and state control of railroads
    Bull Moose Party, Progressive Party
    a former political party in the United States; founded by Theodore Roosevelt during the presidential campaign of 1912; its emblem was a picture of a bull moose
    Prohibition Party
    a political party in the United States; formed in 1869 to oppose the manufacture and sale of alcoholic beverages
    GOP, Republican Party
    the younger of two major political parties in the United States; GOP is an acronym for grand old party
    Social Democratic Party
    a political party in Germany and Britain (and elsewhere) founded in late 19th century; originally Marxist; now advocates the gradual transformation of capitalism into democratic socialism
    Socialist Labor Party
    a political party in the United States; formed in 1874 to advocate the peaceful introduction of socialism
    Socialist Party
    a political party in the United States formed in 1900 to advocate socialism
    Dixiecrats, States' Rights Democratic Party
    a former political party in the United States; formed in 1948 by Democrats from southern states in order to oppose to the candidacy of Harry S Truman
    war party
    a political party that supports a war
    Whig Party
    a former political party in the United States; formed in 1834 in opposition to the Democratic Party; advocated a loose interpretation of the Constitution and high protective tariffs
    third party
    a political party organized in opposition to the major parties in a two-party system
    Opposition
    the major political party opposed to the party in office and prepared to replace it if elected
    Australian Labor Party
    the oldest political party in Australia, founded in 1891; the party is moderately liberal
    British Labour Party, Labor, Labour, Labour Party
    a political party formed in Great Britain in 1900; characterized by the promotion of labor's interests and formerly the socialization of key industries
    type of:
    organisation, organization
    a group of people who work together
  6. noun
    a person involved in legal proceedings
    “the party of the first part”
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    assignee
    (law) the party to whom something is assigned (e.g., someone to whom a right or property is legally transferred)
    assignor
    (law) the party who makes an assignment
    contractor
    (law) a party to a contract
    intervenor
    (law) a party who interposes in a pending proceeding
    Jane Doe
    an unknown or fictitious woman who is a party to legal proceedings
    John Doe
    an unknown or fictitious man who is a party to legal proceedings
    litigant, litigator
    (law) a party to a lawsuit; someone involved in litigation
    reversioner
    (law) a party who is entitled to an estate in reversion
    Richard Roe
    an unknown or fictitious party to legal proceedings
    tort-feasor, tortfeasor
    a party who has committed a tort
    vouchee
    (law) a person called into court to defend a title
    defendant, suspect
    a person or institution against whom an action is brought in a court of law; the person being sued or accused
    appellant, plaintiff in error
    the party who appeals a decision of a lower court
    builder, constructor
    someone who contracts for and supervises construction (as of a building)
    filer
    a party who files a notice with a law court
    complainant, plaintiff
    a person who brings an action in a court of law
    prevailing party
    the party in a lawsuit who obtains a judgment in their own favor
    type of:
    individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul
    a human being
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