Definition of palindrome in English:



  • A word, phrase, or sequence that reads the same backwards as forwards, e.g. madam or nurses run.

    • ‘A kayak - pointed at both ends - could be a palindrome of a vessel, in both shape and word, except that you can't paddle it backwards as happily as you can spell it so.’
    • ‘It's not just the lyrics that are palindromes, but the music is the same backwards as it is forwards as well.’
    • ‘I was thinking about palindromes today as well, but for the rather more mundane reason that they feature in a question for a bygone DSA example class.’
    • ‘The word is a palindrome, reading the same backwards and forwards - or, to put it more cynically, making little sense whichever way up you hold it.’
    • ‘Another good word game is to find a phrase that is a palindrome.’
    • ‘I mean, 1999, 2000, and 2001 were extremely cool, and 2002 is a palindrome, so that's something, but 2003?’
    • ‘Every time I tell someone my name is Hannah, they tell me that it's a palindrome, as though I didn't already know.’
    • ‘I hope so, for I have such high hopes for this new year, one that reads the same backwards as forwards - a calendar palindrome.’
    • ‘This is accompanied by music that, at its midpoint, turns completely around and becomes its own retrograde, a musical palindrome running back to its beginning.’
    • ‘This is our first edition for 2002 (which is a palindrome, by the way).’
    • ‘The mood changes are subtle, yet significant, between songs and the album as a whole forms a palindrome, tonally, like its title.’
    • ‘Often the palindromes are imperfect and interrupted by short sequence elements.’
    • ‘The structure of the palindrome was confirmed by extensive restriction mapping and sequencing.’
    • ‘At 2 minutes past 8 o'clock this evening, the time, date and year will be a palindrome, viz: 2002 2002 2002.’
    • ‘How many palindromes can you think of in pop, either artist name or song title or both?’
    • ‘Numerologists will remember 2002 as a palindrome, the last year until 2112 that can be written the same way backward or forward.’


Early 17th century: from Greek palindromos running back again, from palin again + drom- (from dramein to run).