Definition of parole in English:

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Pronunciation: /pəˈrōl/


1The release of a prisoner temporarily (for a special purpose) or permanently before the completion of a sentence, on the promise of good behavior: he committed a burglary while on parole
More example sentences
  • If this is not bad enough, a large percentage of women sentenced to prison on parole violations have not committed any new crimes, but rather were returned for not passing their urine tests.
  • Even in such cases, however, the task of the Parole Board is the same as in any other case: to assess the risk that the particular prisoner if released on parole, will offend again.
  • Over the years, Billie has gained insight into the reasons why prisoners released on parole so often fail and end up back in prison.
1.1 historical A promise or undertaking given by a prisoner of war not to escape or, if released, not to engage in hostilities, or to return to custody under stated conditions.
Example sentences
  • He separated the captured officers, took their paroles of honour not to attempt escape, then advanced each captain $50 (circa 200 New York shillings) towards private accommodation for themselves and their subalterns on Long Island.
2 Linguistics The actual linguistic behavior or performance of individuals, in contrast to the linguistic system of a community. Contrasted with langue.
Example sentences
  • Most important is Saussure's distinction between langue and parole.
  • I continually move between langue and parole, between the oral and the written, and vice versa.
  • The sign emerges at the conjunction of the signified and the signifier, both of which are in parole, or a language's concrete properties.


[with object] (usually be paroled)
Release (a prisoner) on parole: he was paroled after serving nine months of a two-year sentence
More example sentences
  • In these anxious times, the market for personal-location trackers is looking up - but do we really want to burden our children with the technology that tags paroled prisoners?
  • It is a fundamental fault and flaw to have the people who turn the keys responsible for writing the report that recommends whether an inmate should be paroled or released.
  • The scheme will be mainly targeted at offenders who serve six months or less in jail, but will apply in theory to all prisoners who are paroled.



Pronunciation: /pəˌrōˈlē/
Example sentences
  • California, which has the highest rate of parole violators, sends almost 90,000 of its 118,000 parolees back to prison, at a cost of $900 million each year.
  • The parole officer would then be in a position to immediately suspend the long-term supervision order, or in the case of a parolee, revoke the parole.
  • The Parole Board recalled 231 parolees to prison to recommence serving their sentences in the 2002-03 financial year.


Late 15th century: from Old French, literally 'word', also 'formal promise', from ecclesiastical Latin parabola 'speech'; compare with parol.

  • parable from Middle English:

    The word parable is from an ecclesiastical Latin sense ‘discourse, allegory’ of Latin parabola ‘comparison’. The source is Greek parabolē ‘placing side by side, application’, from para- ‘beside’ and bolē ‘a throw’. The Latin parabola came to be used for the symmetrical curve in the late 16th century, and the same Latin root lies behind parley and parole [both LME]. See also palaver, parliament, ballistic

Words that rhyme with parole

barcarole, bole, bowl, cajole, coal, Cole, condole, console, control, dhole, dole, droll, enrol (US enroll), extol, foal, goal, hole, Joel, knoll, kohl, mol, mole, Nicole, parol, patrol, pole, poll, prole, rôle, roll, scroll, Seoul, shoal, skoal, sole, soul, stole, stroll, thole, Tirol, toad-in-the-hole, toll, troll, vole, whole

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: pa·role

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