Pick A Pair

@sconibear (8005)
United States
January 3, 2010 8:39am CST
Most women have a pair. Most men have a pair. Although their pairs are entirely different.........women keep their pair under their shirt and men keep their pair under their belt. When you play dice, you get TWO dice, or a pair of dice! When you buy shoes, you get TWO shoes, or a pair of shoes! The same can be said for socks and gloves. If you're into fruit, you might even pick up a pair of pears........or TWO pears. So why do we call it a pair of pants when you only get ONE pant??? Unless you happen to find a "Buy one get one free sale" on pants. Do you ever run with scissors???.......which by the way are also a pair........even though there's only ONE!
4 people like this
10 responses
@owlwings (38088)
• Cambridge, England
3 Jan 10
The word pants (as in trousers) comes from pantaloons (plural too) - another word for a kind of hose. This, originally, consisted of two separate sleeves, one for each leg, which went either over or under the britches and were attached to them with strings (or points). The word trousers has a similar history. Trews were originally an individual garment, one for each leg, worn, perhaps, to protect the legs when working in a rough or cold environment. Sometime, it seems, before the 16th century the trews, hose or whatever local name they had were connected, first at the back and later at the front as well but people were so used to speaking of a 'pair' of trews or pantaloons or hose that the name stayed plural. The history and the names for various types of garment varied from place to place and I think that pantaloons originally came from France (or possibly Flanders because French doesn't often use a double 'o' and, in fact, the French for 'trousers' is 'pantalons'). That's roughly the long, short and tall of it, anyway, as I understand it. The invention of the pantyhose came too late (and overlapped the original) for them to be still called stockings and the word 'hose' had become archaic or regional by then. I suspect that the word was actually invented as a trade name (just as gramophone and phonogram were and as hoover still is - any vaccuum cleaner is referred to as a 'hoover' in the UK).
1 person likes this
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
3 Jan 10
Thanks......I now feel a little more edukated. How about scissors??? Is each blade a scissor???
@owlwings (38088)
• Cambridge, England
3 Jan 10
I was trying to think of something else singular that came as a plural. I think you just found it. We also have [a pair of] pliers and [a pair of] shears. I think that the French must be to blame ... yes, let's blame the French!
1 person likes this
@mtdewgurl74 (18122)
• United States
3 Jan 10
Now that is some smart thinking..lol
@dawnald (84132)
• Shingle Springs, California
3 Jan 10
The bear is a pair. What a scare. No fair.
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
3 Jan 10
Glad you care!
1 person likes this
@dawnald (84132)
• Shingle Springs, California
3 Jan 10
Happy new yare.
@dawnald (84132)
• Shingle Springs, California
7 Apr 10
:-) Thanks for the bay ere It was beary fair
@blackbriar (9126)
• United States
5 Jan 10
Pairs or 2's..no matter cause we need one to go with the other, no? Pair of scissors are just that..2 blades together to cut just bout anything. Pair of pants cause there are 2 legs, not 1.
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
5 Jan 10
A sweater has 2 sleeves, but I've never heard of it called a pair of sweaters.
• United States
5 Jan 10
A Sweater, like t-shirt and sweatshirt, cover the torso which includes the arms, therefore, it's singular.
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
5 Jan 10
@mtdewgurl74 (18122)
• United States
3 Jan 10
Well we all have a pair of cheeks...and they are exactly in the same place..some higher some lower...but we all have them..Speaking of scissors why is a pair of scissors called a pair when there is only one item..What about pair of underwear/bloomers....yeah they come in packs..most of the time...but we think of them as a pair...
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
3 Jan 10
BLOOMERS!!! *snicker* Why is the plural of hand, hands.......but the plural of foot is feet??? shouldn't it be foots???
@owlwings (38088)
• Cambridge, England
3 Jan 10
So what do we put on our feet? A pair of beet?
@mtdewgurl74 (18122)
• United States
3 Jan 10
I guess the same reason when tooth because plural and becomes teeth..
• United States
3 Jan 10
LOL it has been my experience that some men have a much smaller "pair" than I do!!!!
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
3 Jan 10
I would hope so. Unless, of course, you're a member of the IBTC!
• United States
3 Jan 10
Nope...can't join that group. I tried once but I made all the flat girls cry as soon as I walked in the room! And Bear...I was talking about the same "pair" that you have!
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
3 Jan 10
Yeah.......I've actually known a few women that had pairs as big as bowling balls.
@happy6162 (3011)
• United States
4 Jan 10
I looked up pair in the dictionary and it said 2 things of the same kind or it could be something make up of two corresponding pieces and pants do have two pair of legs for each of a person legs.
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
4 Jan 10
Thank you, you win the prize for having the answer that makes the most sense.........of course you'll have to share your prize with Webster, or whatever dictionary you used.
@maezee (26855)
• United States
4 Jan 10
English is a crazy language. There are so many aspects of it that are just.. unbeknownst to me! Silent "E"'s also confuse me. It's like, what's the point? But I'm guessing the "pair" dillemma dates way back.. And maybe with some investigation you'll figure out why it came to be.
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
4 Jan 10
Yeah, it's like the words TOMB, COMB, and BOMB.........spelled the same but all three pronounced entirely different. Who comes up with these things???
@Opal26 (17694)
• United States
3 Jan 10
OMFG! Sconi! Don't you think that it's way too early in the year to be testing our intelligence or common sense? You couldn't have waited until the year was just a bit older? Only 3 days into the New Year and already you are testing us about pairs and the lack of "pairs"! It is way too soon to figure out about a "pair of scissors" that mean only 1, a "pair of pants" again that mean only one! You win! You are right! What's the answer? Why do we say that? What do I win? Should I just run with scissors? OMFG! It's 2010 and here we go again! I just have to say that I loves you Sconibear and Missybear too! Hugs, Opal
@sconibear (8005)
• United States
3 Jan 10
Hi Opal, are we having fun yet???
@anklesmash (1417)
3 Jan 10
is it something to do with pants having two legs
@owlwings (38088)
• Cambridge, England
3 Jan 10
Hmmm ... a pair of pants must have four legs. It's a dawwwg!
@snowcat46 (2323)
• United States
9 Jan 10
How silly!! It's a pair of pants cause it holds a pair of ... (Not gonna get in trouble, not me!) Oh, pair of legs. Yeah, pair of legs. There ya go. We don't consider the zipper as part of the pants, since it can be considered a weapon. (Trust me, when it grabs the wrong thing, Definitely a weapon, not part of clothing.) Was that logical? Or quasilogical? Or just queasylogical? Well, it was something anyways...