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Out of curiosity, why is pants plural? I was told that each leg is a pant, which doesn't really make sense since no one wears just one side of the leg. Same goes with scissors. Did they sell just one side of the pants at one point? How about scissors?

Removed this - it was daft!--Williamsayers79 12:54, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

Pants are not Underpants[edit]

It should be obvious that pants means trousers and the like, whereas underpants refer to undergarments! That is why I have cleared up this entry. The usage of pants when referring to underpants is slang.--Williamsayers79 14:25, 31 July 2006 (UTC)

It is not slang in the UK - pants mean underpants here. Slang use of pants in the UK is in Northern England only and is for trousers. --Amedeofelix 15:44, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

It is an Americanism to commonly refer to trousers as pants. --Amedeofelix 15:46, 18 July 2007 (UTC)

Pants definitely means underpants in the UK and not trousers.

Pants meaning trousers is not a Northern England expression, it's from Ireland (and Liverpool). 13:45, 7 September 2009 (UTC)

Pants are definitely trousers in Lancashire, UK.

Pants are indeed trousers in North West England - can this be changed on main page? Or is a single region not sufficient?

Any chance of showing us an example in writing, e.g. a published book? Equinox 13:28, 19 January 2015 (UTC)

Pants are definitely trousers in the North East of England too, at least they were when I grew there in the 1950s-70s. We would never have referred to underpants as 'pants'. —This unsigned comment was added by Richard8686 (talkcontribs).

Verb Definition[edit]

I know this isn't verification, but I've heard (and used) "pants" as the verb definition for many years. Perhaps it's slang? 19:36, 9 June 2007 (UTC)


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Please do not re-nominate for verification without comprehensive reasons for doing so.


"To pants"? "Pantsing"? All three verb senses. --Connel MacKenzie 15:15, 18 May 2007 (UTC)

Stephen has (correctly, I think) removed two of those senses. Of the remaining one:
Most of the b.g.c. hits for "pantsed" are in the sense of "adj.-pantsed" (like "red-haired", "blue-eyed", "baggy-pantsed"), which makes this harder to cite than it should be, but it's still doable.
  • date?, Keith Hunter Jesperson, quoted in Jack Olsen, “I”: The Creation of a Serial Killer, St. Martin's Press (2003), →ISBN, page 124,
    They always pantsed the freshmen in front of the girls, but I didn’t know it was a tradition. […] they pulled my pants down to my ankles. Then they giggled and walked away.
  • 1998 August, anonymous, quoted in Peter H. Merkl, A Coup Attempt in Washington?: A European Mirror on the 1998-1999 Constitutional Crisis, Palgrave Macmillan (2001), →ISBN, page 174,
    They pulled down their swimming trunks to embarrass them. They called it ‘pantsing’ and, I think, Judge Starr just pantsed your president with his Starr Report and DNA test.
Is it acceptable to provide a cite from an episode of a TV show? The protagonist of Quantum Leap was "pantsed" in the episode "Camikazi Kid". (We don't actually need that cite — there are more cites available on b.g.c. — but I think it would be nice to mix it up a bit if no one minds.)
While printed sources are generally preferred, yes, quotations that convey the flavor better, are better. --Connel MacKenzie 19:10, 18 May 2007 (UTC)
Incidentally, I also came across some cites for the more intuitive "de-pants" in the same sense.
RuakhTALK 17:26, 18 May 2007 (UTC)
With the hyphen, right? --Connel MacKenzie 19:10, 18 May 2007 (UTC)
Yup. —RuakhTALK 19:35, 18 May 2007 (UTC)
This is also the third person form of to pant (breathe heavily), right? --Connel MacKenzie 19:10, 18 May 2007 (UTC)
Yeah, we already have that. (That's why I focused my search on "pantsed". "Pantsing" should also be searchable, though.) —RuakhTALK 19:35, 18 May 2007 (UTC)
No, I didn't mean for verification; I didn't see it hidden under the second etymology. Right you are - it was there all along. --Connel MacKenzie 03:34, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

The “de-pants” sense is now cited. Rod (A. Smith) 22:00, 1 August 2007 (UTC)

RFV passed. Thanks, Rod. —RuakhTALK 20:23, 9 September 2007 (UTC)

pants=rubbish/something unvalued ???[edit]

I heard this in England some 10 years ago or more and here it is another recent context . .

Can someone from England give a proper definition.... is it rubbish/something of no or little vlaue???

Yes check.svg Done See adjective. Equinox 13:27, 19 January 2015 (UTC)

Plural-singular issue[edit]

I think we should do something similar here to what Paul G suggested on the talk pages of pyjamas and pajamas. So as the English word is in the plural, translations that are in singular ought to be marked as well. Ferike333 11:16, 30 August 2009 (UTC)

Use of "Australian" in "noun" category[edit]

All other nations/regions are listed simply by their name (i.e. North America, South Africa); Australian usage, however, is listed in its demonym/adjectival form (i.e. Australian, rather than Australia). I tried to edit this, but could not find a way to do so.

Move and etymology[edit]

The adjective form is in the section "Etymology 1". Did the adjective form really come from "Shortened from pantaloons (“trousers”)"? The adjective form should be at the bottom of this entry, for it is the least known meaning of the word "pants". --99percentNog1percentNig (talk) 07:55, 25 March 2018 (UTC)