Definition of pat someone on the back in US English:

pat someone on the back

phrase

  • Express approval of or admiration for someone.

    ‘she needs her own claque to applaud and pat her on the back’
    • ‘It was discussed and approved and we were patted on the back.’
    • ‘I do feel a need to pat Spetnak on the back for this comment.’
    • ‘His friends were milling around him, patting him on the back and congratulating him on a great fight.’
    • ‘I patted him on the back with an approving smile.’
    • ‘‘Well, anyway, I'm glad that Blake could find someone who could make him happy, even for a little while,’ he commented, patting me on the back as he jumped off the bleachers.’
    • ‘My coach commented while patting me on the back.’
    • ‘I'll never want anyone to pat me on the back and congratulate me on coming third, but I've definitely got life in perspective now.’
    • ‘Ellis shouted ‘It worked,’ said Lori approvingly and patting Susan on the back.’
    • ‘Someone handed him a drink as several people crowed around him patting him on the back and congratulating him on the success of the raid.’
    • ‘They seemed nonchalant as they patted Raymond on the back and congratulated him as well.’
    • ‘I was in such a daze from the previous night the next morning that I didn't even realize that I had been made Person Of The Day until I heard people congratulating me and patting me on the back.’
    • ‘As he walked down the tables to pick up a tray and food, everyone patted him on the back and congratulated him.’
    • ‘Although we are in a strong position it is no good patting ourselves on the back in October or November.’
    • ‘He is not the sort of person who gives out compliments or pats you on the back, he does it in other ways.’
    • ‘And there's just the two of us in the room, as he pats me on the back to congratulate me on my unarguably well-delivered line.’
    • ‘The cars' occupants hooted their approval and patted Chad on the back for his bravery.’
    • ‘He felt a million hands patting him on the back and congratulating him on a job well done.’
    • ‘All of Vix's friends complimented him and patted him on the back.’
    • ‘As I'm leaving a man from the audience pats me on the back to congratulate me.’
    • ‘People he did not recognize patted him on the back and congratulating him on an excessively long keg stand.’
    congratulate, praise, sing the praises of, express approval of, take one's hat off to
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