Definition of mate noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//meɪt//
    ; NAmE NAmE//meɪt//
    People in sea travel, Friends
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  1. 1  [countable] (British English, Australian English, informal) a friend They've been best mates since school. I was with a mate. Wordfinderacquaintance, bond, buddy, companion, comrade, friend, mate, neighbour, platonic, playmate See related entries: Friends
  2. friendly name
  3. 2  [countable] (British English, Australian English, informal) used as a friendly way of addressing somebody, especially between men Sorry mate, you'll have to wait. All right, mate?
  4. somebody you share with
  5. 3  [countable] (in compounds) a person you share an activity or accommodation with workmates/teammates/playmates/classmates my room-mate/flatmate see also running mate, soulmate
  6. bird/animal
  7. 4  [countable] either of a pair of birds or animals A male bird sings to attract a mate.
  8. sexual partner
  9. 5[countable] (informal) a husband, wife or other sexual partner
  10. job
  11. 6 [countable] (British English) a person whose job is to help a skilled worker a builder’s/plumber’s mate
  12. on ship
  13. 7 [countable] an officer in a commercial ship below the rank of captain or master see also first mate See related entries: People in sea travel
  14. in chess
  15. 8[uncountable] = checkmate
  16. Word Originnoun senses 1 to 7 late Middle English: from Middle Low German māt(e) ‘comrade’, of West Germanic origin; related to meat (the underlying concept was of eating together). noun sense 8 Middle English: the noun from Anglo-Norman French mat (from the phrase eschec mat ‘checkmate’); the verb from Anglo-Norman French mater ‘to checkmate’.Extra examples He’s a cheat and a gambler; hardly an ideal mate. He’s got loads of mates at school. Many matchmaking sites compile lists of potential mates using basic information. These birds have bright plumage to attract a mate. They’ve been good mates ever since they were at school together.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: mate