Definition of pacific in English:

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Pronunciation: /pəˈsifik/


1Peaceful in character or intent: a pacific gesture
More example sentences
  • As the cool water slowly soothes away my unjustified frustration, I feel my neck muscles relaxing and know my features are easing back to pacific calm.
  • In the midst of a violent and haggard existence Thomas takes an hour out of his day to practice piano in the modest living room of a quiet, pacific piano teacher.
  • And it is hard to find anyone who speaks with administration officials off the record who believes their publicly pacific intentions.
peace-loving, peaceable, pacifist, nonviolent, nonaggressive, nonbelligerent, unwarlike, antiwar
formal irenic
2 (Pacific) Relating to the Pacific Ocean: the Pacific War
More example sentences
  • The lake has 2,000 miles of shoreline, more than the entire US Pacific coast.
  • Paone calls the transfer of diseases between wild and caged salmon a threat to Pacific salmon stocks.
  • Their exhibition features traditional and contemporary Pacific art and carvings.


1 short for Pacific Ocean.
2A steam locomotive of 4-6-2 wheel arrangement.
Example sentences
  • We have a very varied collection, from North East Colliery locomotives to world famous Pacifics such as Sir Nigel Gresley and Blue Peter.
  • Adhesion between steel rail and steel wheel is limited, and only about 56 tons weight could be carried on three coupled axles of the Pacifics; new locomotives, or a reduction in train loads were possibilities, but so was another rebuild.
  • During the 1940s and into 1950 most of the motive power for these trains consisted of F - 15 light Pacifics, with an occasional A - 16 Atlantic being used.



Pronunciation: /pəˈsifək(ə)lē/
Example sentences
  • When the college president pacifically asks Costello if her vegetarianism comes out of moral conviction, she bewilderingly replies that no, ‘it comes out of a desire to save my soul.’
  • To overcome this crisis democratically and pacifically, the majority of people are asking him to announce elections or simply resign.
  • Zach, what did I tell you… do not go over there and start a fight… I told you to pacifically tell them what I want within the next twelve days, now do as you are told.


Mid 16th century: from French pacifique or Latin pacificus 'peacemaking', from pax, pac- 'peace'.

  • peace from Middle English:

    Peace is from Old French pais, from Latin pax ‘peace’. The phrase no peace for the wicked comes from Isaiah 48:22 (There is no peace to the wicked, saith the Lord). In legal texts, the word pacific (mid 16th century), from the same root, still retains its early meaning ‘free from strife, peaceful’. In 1520 the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan passed through the stormy waters of the strait between what is now Tierra Del Fuego and mainland Chile. To his relief he emerged to calm seas, so called the ocean Mar Pacifico ‘tranquil sea’. The treacherous sound he passed through is still the Strait of Magellan. Pacify (Late Middle English) and pacifism (early 20th century) go back to the same root, as does appease (Middle English), literally ‘bring to a peaceful state’. See also pay

Words that rhyme with pacific

anaglyphic, beatific, calorific, colorific, hieroglyphic, honorific, horrific, Indo-Pacific, prolific, scientific, soporific, specific, terrific, transpacific, triglyphic

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: pa·cif·ic

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