Other forms: passed; passing; passes

A document that lets you go somewhere or do something is a pass. You can have a backstage pass at a concert, a three-day pass from a military base, or a hall pass for using the restroom during class.

If you hand something to someone, you can use the verb pass, like when your dad asks you to pass the mashed potatoes. If the hand off is more of a throw or toss, then you are probably referring to a sports pass. You can't complain that no one will pass you the ball if you always stay on the opposite end of the court from where the action is.

Definitions of pass
  1. verb
    go across or through
    “We passed the point where the police car had parked”
    synonyms: go across, go through
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    break through, crack
    pass through (a barrier)
    squeak by, squeak through
    pass across (a sign or house of the zodiac) or pass across (the disk of a celestial body or the meridian of a place)
    cover, cross, cut across, cut through, get across, get over, pass over, track, traverse
    travel across or pass over
    infiltrate, pass through
    pass through an enemy line; in a military conflict
    cover by running; run a certain distance
    move through, pass across, pass over, pass through, transit
    make a passage or journey from one place to another
    pass directly and often in haste
    move violently, as through a barrier
    make one's way by force
    overstep, transgress, trespass
    pass beyond (limits or boundaries)
    negociate, negotiate
    succeed in passing through, around, or over
    pass by means through a lock in a waterway
    make, work
    proceed along a path
    pass through a cycle
    blunder, fumble
    make one's way clumsily or blindly
    cross on foot
    cover or traverse by taking long steps
    traverse or cover by walking
    cross in a pattern, often random
    cross a river where it's shallow
    move as if by clawing, seizing, or digging
    make one's way by jostling, pushing, or shoving
    cross over on a bridge
    cross the road at a red light
    pass through or across
    drive, take
    proceed along in a vehicle
    cycle on
    come to the starting point of a cycle
    cut one's way through the woods or bush
    move swiftly through or over
    traverse as if by a short airplane trip
    type of:
    go, locomote, move, travel
    change location; move, travel, or proceed, also metaphorically
  2. verb
    move past
    “A black limousine passed by when she looked out the window”
    “He passed his professor in the hall”
    synonyms: go by, go past, pass by, surpass, travel by
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    pass around or about; move along the border
    run by
    pass by while running
    fly by
    pass by while flying
    fly by, whisk by, zip by
    move by very quickly
    type of:
    go, locomote, move, travel
    change location; move, travel, or proceed, also metaphorically
  3. verb
    travel past
    “The sports car passed all the trucks”
    synonyms: overhaul, overtake
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    get by
    pass or move in front of
    clear, top
    pass by, over, or under without making contact
    jump across
    type of:
    advance, go on, march on, move on, pass on, progress
    move forward, also in the metaphorical sense
  4. verb
    pass over, across, or through
    synonyms: draw, guide, run
    draw, string, thread
    thread on or as if on a string
    lead, run
    cause something to pass or lead somewhere
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    move over something with pressure
    pass through or into
    pass a thread through
    rub with a brush, or as if with a brush
    rub with pumice, in order to clean or to smoothen
    rub to a uniform size
    puree, strain
    rub through a strainer or process in an electric blender
    rub rosin onto
    sponge down, sponge off
    clean with a sponge, by rubbing
    touch or rub constantly
    scour, scrub
    clean with hard rubbing
    abrade, scour
    rub hard or scrub
    blur, smear, smudge, smutch
    make a smudge on; soil by smudging
    grate, scrape
    scratch repeatedly
    pass over, wipe
    rub with a circular motion
    reduce to small shreds or pulverize by rubbing against a rough or sharp perforated surface
  5. verb
    stretch out over a distance, space, time, or scope; run or extend between two points or beyond a certain point
    synonyms: extend, go, lead, run
    range, run
    change or be different within limits
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    extend or reach
    radiate, ray
    extend or spread outward from a center or focus or inward towards a center
    go deep, go far
    extend in importance or range
    type of:
    occupy a certain position or area; be somewhere
  6. noun
    one complete cycle of operations (as by a computer)
    “it was not possible to complete the computation in a single pass
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    type of:
    cycle, oscillation
    a single complete execution of a periodically repeated phenomenon
  7. noun
    a flight or run by an aircraft over a target
    “the plane turned to make a second pass
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    type of:
    flight, flying
    an instance of traveling by air
  8. noun
    a usually brief attempt
    synonyms: crack, fling, go, offer, whirl
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    type of:
    attempt, effort, endeavor, endeavour, try
    earnest and conscientious activity intended to do or accomplish something
  9. noun
    the location in a range of mountains of a geological formation that is lower than the surrounding peaks
    “we got through the pass before it started to snow”
    synonyms: mountain pass, notch
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    Brenner Pass
    an Alpine mountain pass connecting Innsbruck in Austria with Bolzano in Italy that has long been a route for trade and for invasions
    Cumberland Gap
    a pass through the Cumberland Mountains between Virginia and Kentucky that early settlers used in order to move west
    Donner Pass
    a mountain pass in northeastern California near Lake Tahoe; site where in 1844 some members of an emigrant party survived by eating those who had died
    Khyber Pass
    a mountain pass of great strategic and commercial value in the Hindu Kush on the border between northern Pakistan and western Afghanistan; a route by which invaders entered India
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    col, gap
    a pass between mountain peaks
    defile, gorge
    a narrow pass (especially one between mountains)
    saddle, saddleback
    a pass or ridge that slopes gently between two peaks (is shaped like a saddle)
    water gap
    a pass in a mountain ridge through which a stream flows
    wind gap
    a pass in a mountain ridge with no stream flowing through it
    type of:
    a point or extent in space
  10. verb
    go successfully through a test or a selection process
    “She passed the new Jersey Bar Exam and can practice law now”
    synonyms: make it
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    bomb, fail, flunk, flush it
    fail to get a passing grade
    fall short in what is expected
    judge unacceptable
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    ace, breeze through, nail, pass with flying colors, sail through, sweep through
    succeed at easily
    type of:
    bring home the bacon, come through, deliver the goods, succeed, win
    attain success or reach a desired goal
  11. verb
    grant authorization or clearance for
    synonyms: authorise, authorize, clear
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    approve or sanction officially
    authorize by certificate
    O.K., approve, okay, sanction
    give sanction to
    authorize payments of
    certify, licence, license
    authorize officially
    charge with a task
    formalise, formalize, validate
    declare or make legally valid
    give religious sanction to, such as through on oath
    approve officially
    grant a franchise to
    grant a charter to
    back, endorse, indorse, plump for, plunk for, support
    be behind; approve of
    ratify, sign
    approve and express assent, responsibility, or obligation
    co-sign, cosign
    sign jointly
    establish the legal validity of (wills and other documents)
    accredit, recognise, recognize
    grant credentials to
    support a person for a position
    type of:
    allow, countenance, let, permit
    consent to, give permission
  12. verb
    go unchallenged; be approved
    synonyms: clear
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    pass an inspection or receive authorization
    type of:
    bring home the bacon, come through, deliver the goods, succeed, win
    attain success or reach a desired goal
  13. verb
    make laws, bills, etc. or bring into effect by legislation
    “They passed the amendment”
    synonyms: legislate
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    type of:
    enact, ordain
    order by virtue of superior authority; decree
  14. verb
    allow to go without comment or censure
    “the insult passed as if unnoticed”
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    type of:
    allow, let, permit
    make it possible through a specific action or lack of action for something to happen
  15. verb
    accept or judge as acceptable
    “The teacher passed the student although he was weak”
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    judge unacceptable
    bomb, fail, flunk, flush it
    fail to get a passing grade
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    type of:
    evaluate, judge, pass judgment
    form a critical opinion of
  16. verb
    be superior or better than some standard
    synonyms: exceed, go past, overstep, top, transcend
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    type of:
    excel, stand out, surpass
    distinguish oneself
  17. noun
    success in satisfying a test or requirement
    “his future depended on his passing that test”
    “he got a pass in introductory chemistry”
    synonyms: passing, qualifying
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    failing, flunk
    failure to reach a minimum required performance
    type of:
    an attainment that is successful
  18. noun
    any authorization to pass or go somewhere
    “the pass to visit had a strict time limit”
    synonyms: passport
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    safe-conduct, safeguard
    a document or escort providing safe passage through a region especially in time of war
    type of:
    approval to do something
  19. noun
    a complimentary ticket
    “the star got passes for his family”
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    type of:
    a commercial document showing that the holder is entitled to something (as to ride on public transportation or to enter a public entertainment)
  20. noun
    a document indicating permission to do something without restrictions
    “the media representatives had special passes
    synonyms: laissez passer
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    boarding card, boarding pass
    a pass that allows you to board a ship or plane
    hall pass
    written permission from a teacher for a student to be out the classroom and in the halls of the school
    a permit formerly given to convicts allowing them to leave prison under specific restrictions
    type of:
    approval to do something
  21. noun
    a permit to enter or leave a military installation
    “he had to show his pass in order to get out”
    synonyms: liberty chit
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    type of:
    licence, license, permit
    a legal document giving official permission to do something
  22. noun
    (military) a written leave of absence
    “he had a pass for three days”
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    type of:
    leave, leave of absence
    the period of time during which you are absent from work or duty
  23. noun
    (baseball) an advance to first base by a batter who receives four balls
    synonyms: base on balls, walk
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    type of:
    accomplishment, achievement
    the action of accomplishing something
  24. noun
    you advance to the next round in a tournament without playing an opponent
    synonyms: bye
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    type of:
    conceding, concession, yielding
    the act of conceding or yielding
  25. verb
    place into the hands or custody of
    synonyms: give, hand, pass on, reach, turn over
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    leave with; give temporarily
    slip, sneak
    pass on stealthily
    give (a specific card) to a player
    deliver, fork out, fork over, fork up, hand over, render, turn in
    to surrender someone or something to another
    free, give up, release, relinquish, resign
    part with a possession or right
    commit, confide, entrust, intrust, trust
    confer a trust upon
    entrust, leave
    put into the care or protection of someone
    give to in charge
    release from government control
    deliver something in trust to somebody for a special purpose and for a limited period
    give away
    formally hand over to the bridegroom in marriage; of a bride by her father
    give, sacrifice
    endure the loss of
    charge, consign
    give over to another for care or safekeeping
    commit again
    commit in order to fulfill an obligation
    type of:
    cause to change ownership
  26. verb
    cause to pass
    “She passed around the plates”
    synonyms: make pass
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    cause to go through a recurring sequence
    pass off
    cause to be circulated and accepted in a false character or identity
    pass through
    cause to move through
    lead, run
    cause something to pass or lead somewhere
    fasten by passing through a hole or around something
    cause to repeat a cycle
    pass through a hole or opening
    pass a rope through
  27. verb
    be inherited by
    synonyms: devolve, fall, return
    accrue, fall
    come into the possession of
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    fall, light
    fall to somebody by assignment or lot
    type of:
    change hands, change owners
    be transferred to another owner
  28. verb
    transfer to another; of rights or property
    “Our house passed under his official control”
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    type of:
    undergo a change; become different in essence; losing one's or its original nature
  29. verb
    throw (a ball) to another player
    “Smith passed
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    type of:
    propel through the air
  30. verb
    transmit information
    pass along the good news”
    synonyms: communicate, pass along, pass on, put across
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    implant, plant
    put firmly in the mind
    send a message
    give or constitute a signal, not necessarily verbally
    pass along
    get across, put over
    communicate successfully
    bespeak, call for, quest, request
    express the need or desire for; ask for
    acknowledge, receipt
    report the receipt of
    pass on a communication
    deliver, render, return
    pass down
    send as a message
    send a message to
    make a request for something
    make a request or demand for something to somebody
    request an encore, from a performer
    write a petition for something to somebody; request formally and in writing
    request urgently and forcefully
    appeal, invoke
    request earnestly (something from somebody); ask for aid or protection
    ask for humbly or earnestly, as in prayer
    ask (for something)
    beg, solicit, tap
    make a solicitation or entreaty for something; request urgently or persistently
    obtain or arrange (for oneself) in advance
    ask for identification
    beg off, excuse
    ask for permission to be released from an engagement
    ask to be informed of
    ask for legally or make a legal claim to, as of debts, for example
    call for, invite
    request the participation or presence of
    ask in, invite
    ask to enter
    express a desire for
    ask to obtain free
    arrogate, claim, lay claim
    demand as being one's due or property; assert one's right or title to
    ask over, ask round, invite
    invite someone to one's house
    call a meeting; invite or command to meet
    ask out, invite out, take out
    make a date
    book, hold, reserve
    arrange for and reserve (something for someone else) in advance
    send a brief electronic communication from one cellphone to another
    type of:
    communicate, convey, transmit
    transfer to another
  31. verb
    eliminate from the body
    Pass a kidney stone”
    synonyms: egest, eliminate, excrete
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    perspire, sudate, sweat
    excrete perspiration through the pores in the skin
    exudate, exude, ooze, ooze out, transude
    release (a liquid) in drops or small quantities
    pass after the manner of urine
    empty, evacuate, void
    excrete or discharge from the body
    ca-ca, defecate, make, stool
    have a bowel movement
    barf, be sick, chuck, disgorge, regurgitate, throw up, vomit, vomit up
    eject the contents of the stomach through the mouth
    distil, distill
    give off (a liquid)
    fume, reek
    be wet with sweat or blood, as of one's face
    give off (water) through the skin
    geology: cause molten material, such as lava, to pour forth
    exude profusely
    exude or form gum
    release, secrete
    generate and separate from cells or bodily fluids
    suffer from intense heat
    make one's bed or clothes wet by urinating
    urinate, of cattle and horses
    empty or clean (a body cavity) by the force of suction
    defecate; used of animals
    exude or expel foam
    type of:
    discharge, eject, exhaust, expel, release
    eliminate (a substance)
  32. noun
    (sports) the act of throwing the ball to another member of your team
    “the pass was fumbled”
    synonyms: flip, toss
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    centering, hike, snap
    (American football) putting the ball in play by passing it (between the legs) to a back
    type of:
    the act of throwing (propelling something with a rapid movement of the arm and wrist)
  33. noun
    (American football) a play that involves one player throwing the ball to a teammate
    synonyms: passing, passing game, passing play
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    aerial, forward pass
    a pass to a receiver downfield from the passer
    lateral, lateral pass
    a pass to a receiver upfield from the passer
    spot pass
    a pass to a designated spot on the field; the receiver should arrive at that spot the same time the ball does
    flare, flare pass
    a short forward pass to a back who is running toward the sidelines
    screen pass
    a short forward pass in which the receiver is protected by a screen of blockers
    type of:
    football play
    (American football) a play by the offensive team
  34. adjective
    of advancing the ball by throwing it
    “a pass play”
    synonyms: passing
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    of advancing the ball by running
  35. verb
    pass time in a specific way
    synonyms: spend
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    serve as a soldier in the military
    spend time at a lower socio-economic level than one's own, motivated by curiosity or desire for adventure; usage considered condescending and insensitive
    spend the weekend
    holiday, vacation
    spend or take a vacation
    do, serve
    spend time in prison or in a labor camp
    get through, while away
    spend or pass, as with boredom or in a pleasant manner; of time
    spend a certain length of time; reside temporarily
    overwinter, winter
    spend the winter
    spend the summer
    serve as a means of entrance
    spend a holiday after one's marriage
  36. verb
    pass into a specified state or condition
    synonyms: lapse, sink
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    type of:
    go or proceed from one point to another
  37. verb
    pass by
    synonyms: elapse, glide by, go along, go by, lapse, slide by, slip away, slip by
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    fell, fly, vanish
    pass away rapidly
    type of:
    advance, go on, march on, move on, pass on, progress
    move forward, also in the metaphorical sense
  38. verb
    pass from physical life and lose all bodily attributes and functions necessary to sustain life
    synonyms: buy the farm, cash in one's chips, choke, conk, croak, decease, die, drop dead, exit, expire, give-up the ghost, go, kick the bucket, pass away, perish, pop off, snuff it
    break, break down, conk out, die, fail, give out, give way, go, go bad
    stop operating or functioning
    suffer or face the pain of death
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    be born
    come into existence through birth
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    cease development, die, and be aborted
    asphyxiate, stifle, suffocate
    be asphyxiated; die from lack of oxygen
    buy it, pip out
    be killed or die;
    die from being submerged in water, getting water into the lungs, and asphyxiating
    die before; die earlier than
    famish, starve
    die of food deprivation
    die, as in battle or in a hunt
    succumb, yield
    be fatally overwhelmed
    die from strangulation
    type of:
    change state, turn
    undergo a transformation or a change of position or action
  39. verb
    disappear gradually
    “The pain eventually passed off”
    synonyms: blow over, evanesce, fade, fleet, pass off
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    type of:
    disappear, go away, vanish
    get lost, as without warning or explanation
  40. verb
    come to pass
    synonyms: come about, fall out, go on, hap, happen, occur, pass off, take place
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    break, develop, recrudesce
    arise, come up
    result or issue
    come about or follow as a consequence
    occur between other events or between certain points of time
    come about, happen, or occur
    take place as an additional or unexpected development
    go, proceed
    follow a certain course
    come to pass; arrive, as in due course
    occur at a specified time or place
    be a forerunner of or occur earlier than
    be gradually disclosed or unfolded; become manifest
    recur, repeat
    happen or occur again
    come off, go off, go over
    happen in a particular manner
    come around, roll around
    happen regularly
    happen, materialise, materialize
    come into being; become reality
    bechance, befall, happen
    happen, occur, or be the case in the course of events or by chance
    bechance, befall, betide
    become of; happen to
    coincide, concur
    happen simultaneously
    backfire, backlash, recoil
    come back to the originator of an action with an undesired effect
    be the case by chance
    happen or take place
    fall, shine, strike
    touch or seem as if touching visually or audibly
    turn out
    prove to be in the result or end
    contemporise, contemporize, synchronise, synchronize
    happen at the same time
    drag, drag on, drag out
    proceed for an extended period of time
    descend, fall, settle
    come as if by falling
    run or be performed again
    recur in repeating sequences
    develop due to condensation
    appear, come out
    be issued or published
    open, open up
    become available
    chance to be or do something, without intention or causation
    come, do, fare, get along, make out
    proceed or get along
    come up
    be mentioned
  41. noun
    a bad or difficult situation or state of affairs
    synonyms: strait, straits
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    desperate straits, dire straits
    a state of extreme distress
    type of:
    a complex or critical or unusual difficulty
  42. noun
    a difficult juncture
    “a pretty pass
    synonyms: head, straits
    see moresee less
    type of:
    juncture, occasion
    an event that occurs at a critical time




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