\ ˈklan How to pronounce clan (audio) \

Definition of clan

1a : a Celtic group especially in the Scottish Highlands comprising a number of households whose heads claim descent from a common ancestor the MacDonald clan
b : a group of people tracing descent from a common ancestor : family The whole clan gets together for the holidays.
2 : a group united by a common interest or common characteristics the country club clan

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Examples of clan in a Sentence

The tribe is divided into clans. The whole clan gets together for the holidays.
Recent Examples on the Web When rumors swirled that Woods had been involved with Khloe Kardashian's boyfriend Tristan Thompson, the influencer became estranged from her best friend and the Kardashian-Jenner clan. Ineye Komonibo,, "Is Jordyn Woods Really On The Masked Singer?," 3 Feb. 2020 Outside of the large Kardashian-Jenner clan, the likes of Rick Rubin, Kid Cudi, David Letterman, Charlie Wilson have shown up to the Kardashian-West home and concerts for some of these services. Paula Rogo, Essence, "Kanye West Releases 'Jesus Is Born' on Christmas Day," 26 Dec. 2019 Leave it to the Kardashian-Jenner clan to turn a birthday surprise into an all-out Instagram spectacle. Megan Mccluskey, Time, "Travis Scott Pulled Off the Most Extravagant Birthday Surprise for Kylie Jenner and They're Just Getting Started," 6 Aug. 2019 Of all the fashion statements made by members of the Kardashian-Jenner clan, the best ones usually involve Kylie Jenner outfits. Whitney Perry, Glamour, "The Kylie Jenner Outfits Everyone Can Copy (and Instagram)," 8 Jan. 2020 The Kardashian-Jenner clan regularly hosts the most enviable parties, and their 2019 Christmas Eve shindig looked completely incredible. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Kardashian-Jenner Christmas Eve Bash Featured So Many Revealing Gowns," 25 Dec. 2019 Just ask Andrew Fitzsimons, whose client roster includes Adriana Lima, Joan Smalls—oh, and every single member of the Kardashian-Jenner clan. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "A Celebrity Hairstylist on the Pro Tools He Won’t Leave Home Without," 15 July 2019 For the last week, social media has been swirling with speculation that someone in the Kardashian-Jenner clan is pregnant, thanks to a video that Khloé Kardashian posted from her birthday party. Marci Robin, Allure, "Kylie Jenner May Be Launching a Line of Alcoholic Beverages," 29 June 2019 Even in primitive societies, older warriors knew to sacrifice their own lives to save the children that were the genetic future of the clan, and the mothers and grandmothers who nurtured them; this was a biological imperative. Edward Lotterman, Twin Cities, "Real World Economics: Fatal high-rise fire raises wider cost and benefit questions," 22 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'clan.' 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 clan

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

History and Etymology for clan

Middle English, from Scottish Gaelic clann offspring, clan, from Old Irish cland plant, offspring, from Latin planta plant

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Time Traveler for clan

Time Traveler

The first known use of clan was in the 15th century

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Statistics for clan

Last Updated

14 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Clan.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for clan


How to pronounce clan (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of clan

: a large group of people who are related
informal : a large family
informal : a group of people who are similar or who are interested in the same thing


\ ˈklan How to pronounce clan (audio) \

Kids Definition of clan

1 : a group (as in the Scottish Highlands) made up of households whose heads claim to have a common ancestor
2 : a large family

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More from Merriam-Webster on clan

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for clan

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with clan

Spanish Central: Translation of clan

Nglish: Translation of clan for Spanish Speakers

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

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