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



    BrE BrE//ˈpedl//
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈpedl//
    Cycling, Parts of a car, Musical instruments
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  1. 1a flat bar on a machine such as a bicycle, car, etc. that you push down with your foot in order to make parts of the machine move or work I couldn't reach the pedals on her bike. She pressed her foot down sharply on the brake pedal. a pedal boat (= one driven by pedals) Wordfinderback-pedal, cycling, dismount, handlebar, pedal, ride, saddle, speed, tandem, velodrome See related entries: Cycling, Parts of a car
  2. 2a bar on a musical instrument such as a piano or an organ that you push with your foot in order to control the sound See related entries: Musical instruments
  3. Word Originearly 17th cent. (denoting a foot-operated lever of an organ): from French pédale, from Italian pedale, from Latin pedalis ‘a foot in length’, from pes, ped- ‘foot’.Extra examples Her foot was working the pedal of the sewing machine. Some guitar players tend to overuse the wah-wah pedal. To stop the machine push the foot pedal. with one foot on the pedalIdioms
      put the pedal to the metal, with the pedal to the metal (North American English, informal)
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    1. 1(to go) at full speed; (to drive) with the accelerator of the car pressed to the floor We drove through the night flat-out, with the pedal to the metal.
    2. 2to use as much effort as possible; with as much effort as possible I'm still putting the pedal to the metal here at work.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: pedal