Definition of papa in English:


Pronunciation /pəˈpɑː//ˈpɑːpə/


  • 1North American dated One's father.

    ‘he saw his papa's face change at this news’
    as name ‘Papa had taught her to ride a bicycle’
    • ‘‘Your papa's coming home,’ she whispered to him for the hundredth time as she bounced him on her knee playfully.’
    • ‘Mama is resting with papa and Jeanette is listening to the radio.’
    • ‘Antonia de Vito's family in Italy is flooded out of their home in the 1950s, so they all pack their things to join papa in Edmonton.’
    • ‘Fannie remembered her papa talking about his brother Jack.’
    • ‘Heaven had taken her Grandmother and then Grandfather, and now it took her papa too, would her mother be next?’
  • 2A code word representing the letter P, used in radio communication.

    • ‘Say you're in Fort Mason in Piedmont. Piedmont, being the city you're in, would come first, so Papa, then Fort Mason, so you would have Papa Foxtrot Mike, then its coordinates. So all together it would be: Papa Foxtrot Mike, 3s 15e.’
    • ‘Papa November Nine, This is Papa November One, Go Ahead, Over!’


Late 17th century: from French, via late Latin from Greek papas.