collective

1 of 2

adjective

col·​lec·​tive kə-ˈlek-tiv How to pronounce collective (audio)
1
: denoting a number of persons or things considered as one group or whole
flock is a collective word
2
a
: formed by collecting : aggregated
b
of a fruit : multiple
3
a
: of, relating to, or being a group of individuals
b
: involving all members of a group as distinct from its individuals
a collective action
4
: marked by similarity among or with the members of a group
the collective interests of the town
5
: collectivized or characterized by collectivism
collective farming
collective communities
6
: shared or assumed by all members of the group
collective responsibility
the collective opinion of the staff
collective guilt
collectively adverb

collective

2 of 2

noun

1
: a collective body : group
a social collective
2
: a cooperative unit or organization
specifically : collective farm
3
: a helicopter control system governing lift

Example Sentences

Adjective We made a collective decision to go on strike. The incident became part of our collective memory. the collective wisdom of generations
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
That would offer an opportunity for a multilayered dialogue about how the country can properly transmit the collective memory of its colonial past and do right by those who risked their lives to maintain French dominance. Colette Davidson, The Christian Science Monitor, 25 Jan. 2023 In a little more than a season and a half, Kidd and general manager Nico Harrison have instilled a culture that both demands and enables individual players to fit in, thus strengthening the collective group. Dallas News, 18 Jan. 2023 While those images and subsequent congressional investigation and report are part of the collective memory, a debate still rages over what exactly to call what happened that day. Deion Scott Hawkins, The Conversation, 5 Jan. 2023 The bloc overcame an initially chaotic response to Covid and launched an ambitious collective economic response to help badly affected members. Drew Hinshaw, WSJ, 28 Dec. 2022 Over the summer, Texas lawmakers released a detailed report that outlined what officials have described as a series of missteps by law enforcement agents as well as administrators during their collective response to the shooting. Emily Mae Czachor, CBS News, 21 Dec. 2022 Nicholson fills his leading characters with inner conflict and complex morality, and his iconic antagonists like Jack Torrance and the Joker loom large in our collective memory. Wesley Stenzel, EW.com, 20 Dec. 2022 With these victories, AARP has helped older Americans embrace their collective identity—and power. Dana Suskind, The Atlantic, 18 Nov. 2022 There was no immediate proof that Tuesday’s blast was a deliberate, hostile attack on NATO member Poland that could trigger the alliance’s provisions for a collective military response. Vasilisa Stepanenko, BostonGlobe.com, 16 Nov. 2022
Noun
Wednesday marks the official announcement of the third class of athletes the collective has connected with charities through NIL deals. Zach Osterman, The Indianapolis Star, 26 Jan. 2023 In the eight months since Tom McNamara helped launch The Kingdom NIL, the collective that’s geared toward supporting UCF athletes through their name, image and likeness has grown in membership and financially. Jason Beede, Orlando Sentinel, 24 Jan. 2023 The Los Angeles creative collective formed in late 2019 when a handful of TikTok's biggest stars moved into a house together. Anna Lazarus Caplan, Peoplemag, 24 Jan. 2023 One of the most prolific ransomware groups ever, the LockBit collective has attempted to maintain a low profile in spite of its volume of attacks. WIRED, 24 Jan. 2023 Aquarius is a sign that often focuses on the collective, so Montúfar advises us to think beyond ourselves during this luminary. Elizabeth Gulino, refinery29.com, 23 Jan. 2023 For most of its history, the collective offered wines only from Bordeaux but, in 1998, began selling some of the most renowned wines from around the world. Mike Desimone And Jeff Jenssen, Robb Report, 22 Jan. 2023 The collective was launched more than six years ago by Chris Zertuche, the co-owner of the former La Bodega Gallery in Barrio Logan. Roxana Becerril, San Diego Union-Tribune, 22 Jan. 2023 Personnel moves within the collective also are expected. Mark Long, ajc, 20 Jan. 2023 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Adjective

Middle English collectif, borrowed from Anglo-French & Medieval Latin; Anglo-French, borrowed from Medieval Latin collēctīvus, going back to Late Latin, "comprehensive, (in logic and grammar) inferential," going back to Latin, "preceding by inference, deductive," from collēctus, past participle of colligere "to gather together, assemble, accumulate, deduce, infer" + -īvus -ive — more at collect entry 2

Noun

derivative of collective entry 1

First Known Use

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1655, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of collective was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near collective

Cite this Entry

“Collective.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/collective. Accessed 4 Feb. 2023.

Kids Definition

collective

1 of 2 adjective
col·​lec·​tive kə-ˈlek-tiv How to pronounce collective (audio)
1
: having to do with a number of persons or things considered as one group
"flock" is a collective noun
2
: formed by collecting
3
: of, relating to, or involving all members of a group
the collective feelings of the team
collective legal action
4
: shared or done by a number of persons as a group
a collective effort
collectively adverb

collective

2 of 2 noun
1
: a collective body : group
2
: a cooperative unit or organization

Legal Definition

collective

adjective
col·​lec·​tive kə-ˈlek-tiv How to pronounce collective (audio)
: involving all members of a group as distinct from individual members
collectively adverb

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