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a short pole with a broad blade at one or both ends, used without an oarlock to move a small boat or canoe through the water. an act of using a paddle in a boat:a gentle paddle on sluggish water North American a short-handled bat used in various ball games, especially table tennis. a paddle-shaped instrument used for mixing food or for stirring or mixing in industrial processes. North American informal a paddle-shaped instrument used for administering corporal punishment. each of the boards fitted around the circumference of a paddle wheel or mill wheel. a flat array of solar cells projecting from a spacecraft. the fin or flipper of an aquatic mammal or bird. Medicine a plastic-covered electrode used in cardiac stimulation.
1 [no object] move through the water in a boat using a paddle or paddles:he paddled along the coast [with object] propel (a small boat or canoe) with a paddle or paddles:he was teaching trainees to paddle canoes [with object] travel along (a stretch of water) by paddling:I had paddled the river through other hot July spells (of a bird or other animal) swim with short fast strokes:the swan paddled away 2 [with object] informal
, chiefly North American beat (someone) with a paddle as a punishment:he was firm in his conviction that his children would never be paddled