\ ˈant How to pronounce ant (audio) \

Definition of ant

 (Entry 1 of 6)

: any of a family (Formicidae) of colonial hymenopterous insects with a complex social organization and various castes performing special duties
ants in one's pants
: impatience for action or activity : restlessness

Definition of ant (Entry 2 of 6)

1 antenna
2 antonym

Definition of Ant (Entry 3 of 6)




Definition of ant- (Entry 4 of 6)

— see anti-

Definition of -ant (Entry 5 of 6)

1a : one that performs (a specified action) : personal or impersonal agent claimant coolant
b : thing that promotes (a specified action or process) expectorant
2 : one connected with annuitant
3 : thing acted upon (in a specified manner) inhalant

Definition of -ant (Entry 6 of 6)

1 : performing (a specified action) or being (in a specified condition) somnambulant
2 : promoting (a specified action or process) expectorant

Examples of ant in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Peppered throughout are jokes that resonate now but will likely only elicit head-scratches and futile Google searches years on: Why is someone pretending to be an ant on Facebook? Jeva Lange, TheWeek, "Social Distance is quick-turn pandemic content done right," 15 Oct. 2020 When an ant colony went hunting small insects on a dry river bed in Buxa Tiger Reserve, West Bengal, India, a tiger beetle began to pick off some of the ants. Alan Taylor, The Atlantic, "Winners of Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2020," 14 Oct. 2020 Schiap might have been seen as a gnat-like rival by Coco Chanel, but her approach to fashion was in line with that of her artist friends, especially Salvador Dalí, who included an ant on his 1944 cover for Vogue. Laird Borrelli-persson, Vogue, "A Fashion Fly-By Inspired by Last Night’s Debate," 8 Oct. 2020 People who evacuated during the storm often had what looked like full body rashes, in which each large pustule was a single ant bite. Sarah Gibbens, National Geographic, "How powerful hurricanes hasten the disappearance of Louisiana’s wetlands," 11 Sep. 2020 Terry told me about her cats (Issa and Basho), the opening of a datura flower and an ant carrying a blossom. Bianca Giaever, New York Times, "Night Walks and Letters," 25 Sep. 2020 The city closed several public parks Tuesday morning as a precaution due to potentially dangerous floating ant piles that can form in high water. Yvette Orozco, Houston Chronicle, "League City authorities expect more rain, concerned about Clear Creek," 22 Sep. 2020 Phil Barden, an assistant professor at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, published a paper last month based on a piece of amber from Myanmar that contained an unusual prehistoric ant. Katie Hunt, CNN, "'Blood amber:' A portal into dinosaur times but an ethical minefield for paleontologists," 19 Sep. 2020 Access to feeders by ants can be easily controlled with an ant guard that is simply a small cup that hangs between the feeder and the hanger. Ernie Cowan, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column evolves into an Ann Landers-of-sorts on the subject of nature," 17 Sep. 2020

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

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First Known Use of ant


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for ant


Middle English ante, emete, from Old English æmette; akin to Old High German āmeiza ant

Noun suffix

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from -ant, present participle suffix, from Latin -ant-, -ans, present participle suffix of first conjugation, from -a- (stem vowel of first conjugation) + -nt-, -ns, present participle suffix; akin to Old English -nde, present participle suffix, Greek -nt-, -n, participle suffix

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Time Traveler for ant

Time Traveler

The first known use of ant was before the 12th century

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Statistics for ant

Last Updated

22 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Ant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for ant


How to pronounce -ant (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ant

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a kind of small insect that lives in an organized social group

English Language Learners Definition of -ant (Entry 2 of 3)

: a person or thing that does a specified thing

English Language Learners Definition of -ant (Entry 3 of 3)

: doing a specified thing or behaving in a specified way


\ ˈant How to pronounce ant (audio) \

Kids Definition of ant

: a small insect related to the bees and wasps that lives in colonies and forms nests in the ground or in wood in which it stores food and raises its young

Kids Definition of ant.



Kids Definition of ant-

see anti-

\ ənt \

Kids Definition of -ant

 (Entry 1 of 5)

1 : one that does or causes a certain thing deodorant
2 : thing that is acted upon in a certain way

Kids Definition of -ant (Entry 2 of 5)

1 : doing a certain thing or being a certain way observant
2 : causing a certain action

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More from Merriam-Webster on ant

Nglish: Translation of ant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ant for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about ant

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