Share this entry

parachute Line breaks: para|chute
Pronunciation: /ˈparəʃuːt/

Definition of parachute in English:


Image of parachute
A cloth canopy which fills with air and allows a person or heavy object attached to it to descend slowly when dropped from an aircraft, or which is released from the rear of an aircraft on landing to act as a brake: the saviour of many pilots has been the parachute the planes came over the coast and started to drop supplies by parachute [as modifier]: a parachute regiment
More example sentences
  • Keahi would fly in low on autopilot, the five would throw out their heavy supplies on parachutes, then jump by parachute themselves.
  • In 1922, Soviet soldiers were dropped successfully by parachute from aircraft.
  • Paragliding is the act of strapping on a parachute and running off the top of a cliff, where upward air currents fill the parachute and allow you to glide.


Back to top  
1Drop from an aircraft by parachute: [no object]: airborne units parachuted in to secure the airport [with object]: an air operation to parachute relief supplies into the region
More example sentences
  • All three crew members parachuted from the aircraft, landing safely in West Germany and were recovered by US / Allied troops.
  • The group parachuted in and set up airborne operations. It was a great feat.
  • The other nine were able to safely parachute from the aircraft.
2Appoint or be appointed in an emergency or from outside the existing hierarchy: [with object]: the former Conservative minister was controversially parachuted into the safe seat
More example sentences
  • While we all want to do all we can, having police teams at the college feels like we've been parachuted into a film without knowing the plot.
  • It helps to know what living in the village is like as it feels odd to be parachuted into this weird little world populated by 10,000 athletes.
  • Timmins was parachuted into Las Vegas to oversee the opening, and it quickly became obvious that the debts would need refinancing.


Late 18th century: from French para- 'protection against' + chute 'fall'.

  • This was originally a French coinage from the combining form para- ‘protection against’ and French chute ‘fall’.



Pronunciation: /ˈparəʃuːtɪst/
Example sentences
  • I didn't have a lot of time to prepare for the parachute landing and, not being a parachutist, this was new to me.
  • The parachutists landed within a two-mile radius of their downed bomber.
  • Army parachutists drop into the ocean from a C - 130 Hercules as part of Exercise Swift Eagle.

Words that rhyme with parachute


Definition of parachute in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day innocuous
Pronunciation: iˈnäkyo͞oəs
not harmful or offensive