band

1 of 3

noun (1)

1
: something that confines or constricts while allowing a degree of movement
2
: something that binds or restrains legally, morally, or spiritually
3
: a strip serving to join or hold things together: such as
b
: a cord or strip across the back of a book to which the sections are sewn
4
: a thin flat encircling strip: such as
a
: a close-fitting strip that confines material at the waist, neck, or cuff of clothing
b
: a strip of cloth used to protect a newborn baby's navel

called also bellyband

c
: a ring of elastic
5
a
: a strip (as of living tissue or rock) or a stripe (as on an animal) differentiable (as by color, texture, or structure) from the adjacent material or area
b
: a more or less well-defined range of wavelengths, frequencies, or energies
6
: a narrow strip serving chiefly as decoration: such as
a
: a narrow strip of material applied as trimming to an article of dress
b
bands plural : a pair of strips hanging at the front of the neck as part of a clerical, legal, or academic dress
c
: a ring without raised portions
7

band

2 of 3

verb

banded; banding; bands

transitive verb

1
: to affix a band to or tie up with a band
2
: to finish or decorate with a band
3
: to gather together : unite
banded themselves together for protection

intransitive verb

: to unite for a common purpose
often used with together
have banded together in hopes of attacking the blight that is common to them allJ. B. Conant
bander noun

band

3 of 3

noun (2)

: a group of persons, animals, or things
especially : a group of musicians organized for ensemble playing

Examples of band in a Sentence

Verb banded the waist of the dress with a matching belt banded the newspapers together for delivery
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
The band will support the album with another round of tour dates kicking off in June, including appearances at CMA Fest in Nashville, at Bonnaroo in Manchester, Tennessee, and at Chicago’s Windy City Smokeout festival in July. Joseph Hudak, Rolling Stone, 9 Apr. 2024 No Doubt, which had been advertised as part of Coachella’s bill — but without saying on which day the band would appear — will perform Saturday at 9:25 p.m. on the festival’s main stage. Mikael Wood, Los Angeles Times, 9 Apr. 2024 As totality approached, though, Koenig announced that the band would be taking a short intermission to let everyone focus on the impending darkness. Chris Willman, Variety, 9 Apr. 2024 Later in the evening, Toby, who died of stomach cancer on Feb. 5 at age 62, will be honored with a tribute performance featuring Brooks & Dunn, Lainey Wilson and Sammy Hagar as well as members of Toby's beloved band, plus Lukas Nelson and former MLB star Roger Clemens. Sabienna Bowman, Peoplemag, 8 Apr. 2024 Stylists rolled racks of tweed pants and natty cardigans into the studio—ivory-tower drag for the band. Rachel Syme, The New Yorker, 8 Apr. 2024 After activating, slip the band on your arm and go to sleep. Latifah Miles, Parents, 8 Apr. 2024 With a propulsive band behind him and the spotlight on him, Bryan’s songs felt musically fleshier but thematically emptier. Travis M. Andrews, Washington Post, 28 Mar. 2024 Yoshiki played in bands alongside childhood friend and singer-songwriter Toshimitsu Deyama (soon to be better known to the world via his own mononym, Toshi), with the two founding X Japan in 1982 and leading the band through its multi-platinum, award-winning career. Jeff Benjamin, Variety, 27 Mar. 2024
Verb
There are now about 250 Minnesota loons banded and part of the study along with 400 in Wisconsin. John Myers, Twin Cities, 6 Apr. 2024 On her 12th studio album, Shakira fully invests in these cross-genre marvels — songs with rapper Cardi B, Tejano band Grupo Frontera, Mexican corridos group Fuerza Regida and EDM masters Bizarrap and Tiesto, among others — that together represent the soundscape of current-day Latin pop. Thania Garcia, Variety, 22 Mar. 2024 Famous among birders, Wisdom was first banded by scientists in 1956. Erika I. Ritchie, Orange County Register, 5 Feb. 2024 Even the secular intelligentsia banded with the ayatollah, dismissing the protests and the blatant anti-Semitic and anti-feminist character of the new leadership as a few minor quirks upon which the great revolution could not afford to dwell. Roya Hakakian, The Atlantic, 22 Nov. 2023 Outside of the government, civilians have banded to try and answer the questions about the unknown themselves. Kelsey Klimara, ABC News, 19 Jan. 2024 Here’s a quick way to distinguish the two species: the redear’s dark ear flap includes a red border, and the sides have more of a golden, often speckled, coloration with vertical banding much fainter than that of a bluegill. David A. Brown, Field & Stream, 11 Jan. 2024 Note the white banding on the rocks around the shore. Tom Yulsman, Discover Magazine, 20 Dec. 2023 Over the course of 60 years, scientists at the Bird Banding Laboratory captured and banded two million birds in the United States and Canada, recording their species and location. Maddie Bender, Smithsonian Magazine, 22 Nov. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'band.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Noun (1)

in senses 1 & 2, from Middle English band, bond something that constricts, from Old Norse band; akin to Old English bindan to bind; in other senses, from Middle English bande strip, from Middle French, from Vulgar Latin *binda, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German binta fillet; akin to Old English bindan to bind, bend fetter — more at bind

Noun (2)

borrowed from Middle French bande "troop, company of people," borrowed from Old Occitan banda, going back to Late Latin banda, plural of bandum "flag, standard" (attested in glosses), borrowed from Gothic bandwo "sign, signal" (or a cognate Germanic word), of uncertain origin

Note: The meaning of the Latin word is well illustrated by the following passage from Paul the Deacon's History of the Lombards (Historia Langobardorum, 1.20), written in the late eighth century: "Tato vero Rodulfi vexillum, quod bandum appellant, eiusque galeam, quam in bello gestare consueverat, abstulit." ("Tato [a Lombard king] indeed carried off the banner of Rodulf [a king of the Heruli, a Germanic people], which they call bandum, and his helmet, which he had been accustomed to wear in battle") The presumption is that the standard, which served as a rallying or assembly point for a group of soldiers, was applied to the group itself, and the meaning further generalized to any company of people. — The Gothic word bandwo is generally taken as descending from Indo-European *bheh2- "shine, give light, appear" (see fantasy entry 1) though derivational detail is lacking. D. Kroonen (Etymological Dictionary of Proto-Germanic, Brill, 2013) sees it as from *bhonh2-tu̯éh2, from the base of Germanic *bannan- "speak formally, call on, order" (from *bhonh2-e-, per Kroonen; see ban entry 1 ). The Gothic noun has a verbal derivative bandwjan "to give a sign, reveal," with a prefixed form gabandwjan. The verb is matched by Old Icelandic benda "to beckon, give a sign, forebode," apparently the only other Germanic evidence for the etymon.

First Known Use

Noun (1)

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun (2)

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of band was in the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near band

Cite this Entry

“Band.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/band. Accessed 13 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

band

1 of 3 noun
1
: something that confines or constricts while allowing some movement
2
: something that binds or restrains legally, morally, or spiritually
3
: a strip serving to join or hold things together
4
: a strip that is different (as in color, texture, or composition) from nearby matter
a black beak with a white band
5
: a range of wavelengths, frequencies, or energies between two specified limits
banded
ˈban-dəd
adjective

band

2 of 3 verb
1
: to put a band on
2
: to tie up with a band
3
: to join in a group
banded together for protection

band

3 of 3 noun
1
: a group of persons, animals, or things
2
: a group of musicians playing together
Etymology

Noun

partly from a word of Norse origin meaning "something that binds" and partly from early French bande "stripe"; of Germanic origin

Noun

from early French bande "troop," derived from an earlier word of Germanic origin

Medical Definition

band

noun
1
: a thin flat encircling strip especially for binding: as
a
: a strip of cloth used to protect a newborn baby's navel

called also bellyband

b
: a thin flat strip of metal that encircles a tooth
orthodontic bands
2
: a strip separated by some characteristic color or texture or considered apart from what is adjacent: as
a
: a stripe, streak, or other elongated mark on an animal
especially : one transverse to the long axis of the body
b
: a line or streak of differentiated cells
c
: one of the alternating dark and light segments of skeletal muscle fibers
d
e
: a strip of abnormal tissue either congenital or acquired
especially : a strip of connective tissue that causes obstruction of the bowel

More from Merriam-Webster on band

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