\ ˈə How to pronounce er (audio) , ˈä usually with prolonged vowel How to pronounce er (audio) , nonstandard ˈər How to pronounce er (audio) \

Definition of er

 (Entry 1 of 5)

used to express hesitation



Definition of Er (Entry 2 of 5)


Definition of ER (Entry 3 of 5)

1 earned run
2 emergency room


adjective suffix or adverb suffix

Definition of -er (Entry 4 of 5)

used to form the comparative degree of adjectives and adverbs of one syllable hotterdrier and of some adjectives and adverbs of two or more syllables completerbeautifuller
variants: or less commonly -ier or -yer

Definition of -er (Entry 5 of 5)

1a : person occupationally connected with furrier lawyer
b : person or thing belonging to or associated with header old-timer
c : native of : resident of cottager New Yorker
d : one that has three-decker
e : one that produces or yields porker
2a : one that does or performs (a specified action) batter sometimes added to both elements of a compound builder-upper
b : one that is a suitable object of (a specified action) broiler
3 : one that is foreigner in all senses -yer in a few words after w, -ier in a few other words, otherwise -er

Examples of er in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Interjection Look back on those fun summer days by dressing up as a dog and its complements, er, condiments. Cameron Jenkins, Good Housekeeping, 11 May 2022 Animals aren’t the only ones who have suffered at the hands, er, paws of animals at the National Zoo. Washington Post, 4 May 2022 Billboard is hosting bi-weekly head-to-head challenges on entertainment and pop culture gaming app VersusGame, where fans can vote on their favorite artists and songs and wag er on who will top the charts and more. Xander Zellner, Billboard, 3 May 2022 Over the last couple of decades, April 20th has become a fixture date for cannabis consumers to gather and pass the, er… joy around. Rivea Ruff, Essence, 20 Apr. 2022 This is doubly true for seasoned hikers with tons of backcountry miles under their belts—er, boots. Mike Richard, Men's Health, 28 Apr. 2022 Things that were, er, more opulent than a bloody G-string. Andrea Towers, EW.com, 22 Apr. 2022 Ex-Walking Dead-er Michael Rooker was Yondu in two Guardians of the Galaxy movies. Paul Tassi, Forbes, 15 Apr. 2022 But Amazon shoppers are here to save you from the extra spoonfuls — er, try-ons — and point you in the right direction. Claire Harmeyer, PEOPLE.com, 5 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'er.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of er


1862, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for er

Adjective suffix or adverb suffix

Middle English -er, -ere, -re, from Old English -ra (in adjectives), -or (in adverbs); akin to Old High German -iro, adjective comparative suffix, Latin -ior, Greek -iōn

Noun suffix

Middle English -er, -ere, -ier, -iere; partly from Old English -ere (from Latin -arius); partly from Old French -ier, -iere, from Latin -arius, -aria, -arium -ary; partly from Anglo-French -ere, from Latin -ator -or — more at -ary, -or

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Last Updated

18 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Er.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/er. Accessed 22 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for er


adjective suffix or adverb suffix
\ ər \

Kids Definition of -er

 (Entry 1 of 2)

used to form the comparative degree of adjectives and adverbs of one syllable hotterdrier and of some adjectives and adverbs of two or more syllables shallowerearlier


noun suffix
\ ər \
variants: also -ier \ ē-​ər , yər \ or -yer \ yər \

Kids Definition of -er (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a person who has a particular job hatter lawyer
2 : a person or thing belonging to or associated with old-timer
3 : a native of : resident of New Yorker
4 : a person or thing that has
5 : a person or thing that produces thriller
6 : a person or thing that performs a specified action reporter
7 : a person or thing that is suitable for a specified action broiler
8 : a person or thing that is foreigner



Medical Definition of Er

 (Entry 1 of 2)




Medical Definition of ER (Entry 2 of 2)

More from Merriam-Webster on er

Nglish: Translation of er for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of er for Arabic Speakers


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