\ ˈkrü How to pronounce crew (audio) \

Definition of crew

 (Entry 1 of 3)

chiefly British past tense of crow


\ ˈkrü How to pronounce crew (audio) \

Definition of crew (Entry 2 of 3)

1 archaic : a band or force of armed men
2a : a group of people associated together in a common activity or by common traits or interests
3a : a company of people working on one job or under one foreman or operating a machine
b : the whole company belonging to a ship sometimes including the officers and master also : one who assists the skipper of a sailboat
c : the persons who have duties on an aircraft in flight
d : the rowers and coxswain of a racing shell also : rowing


crewed; crewing; crews

Definition of crew (Entry 3 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to act as a member of a crew

transitive verb

: to serve as a crew member on (a ship, an aircraft, etc.)

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Other Words from crew


crewless \ ˈkrü-​ləs How to pronounce crewless (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for crew

Synonyms: Noun

cabal, conspiracy, gang, Mafia, mob, ring, syndicate

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Examples of crew in a Sentence


a skilled member of a ship's crew the flight's passengers and crew the ship's captain and crew A construction crew will begin work on the house next week.


She spent a couple of years crewing on a British ship. The ship was crewed by 12 men.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Johnson continued to spot open Eagles in the second half, hitting Ringland in the third and fourth quarters for scores as Milford continued to keep the stats crew alert. Scott Springer,, "Ohio high school football: Milford blasts Loveland, 47-13, for Miami Township Victory Bell," 13 Sep. 2019 In 2009, an Emirates flight crew accidentally entered its preflight weight as 262.9 tons rather than the accurate 362.9 tons while preparing for departure in Melbourne. Matthias Gafni,, "SFO: The typo that almost crashed a plane," 13 Sep. 2019 Lights began to flicker on in some neighborhoods, and crews were seen repairing transformers in other areas. Danica Coto, Anchorage Daily News, "Bahamas tackles massive clean-up after Dorian, 1,300 missing," 13 Sep. 2019 Lynch described the document as static and said a less structured plan is needed to be able to follow on-the-spot instructions from emergency services crew during a disaster such as a fire. Julie Gallant, Ramona Sentinel, "Planners review Woodson parking, evacuation plan," 13 Sep. 2019 The building was later cleared by crews from the Salem Fire department. oregonlive, "Mailroom at Oregon State Penitentiary evacuated after suspicious substance found," 13 Sep. 2019 In 2008, rescue crews ventured out to pluck people from their homes in an all-out search for thousands of Texans who had stubbornly stayed behind overnight to face Hurricane Ike., "Today in history: September 13," 13 Sep. 2019 In one ad, an ambulance crew arrives with a patient, only to find the hospital dark and empty. New York Times, "Mystery Solved: Private-Equity-Backed Firms Are Behind Ad Blitz on ‘Surprise Billing’," 13 Sep. 2019 But geotech experts determined the slope was stable enough that no further blasting on the rockface was needed before crews could begin working on clearing the road. Mitchell Byars, The Denver Post, "Boulder Canyon reopened following rock slide," 12 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Boulet, who won her first-ever 100-miler in 2015 at Western States and was a U.S. Olympic marathoner in 2008, said she was inspired to run at Leadville after crewing for her boss at GU Energy Labs a few years ago. Daniel Petty, The Denver Post, "Magdalena Boulet wins women’s 2019 Leadville 100 after leading for nearly the entire race," 19 Aug. 2019 During Apollo 8, the first successful crewed mission to orbit the moon and return to Earth, her team created a return trajectory and refined it in real time using relatively primitive computing tools. Erin Blakemore, National Geographic, "Inside Apollo mission control, from the eyes of the first woman on the job," 18 July 2019 Taking a late summer getaway, the Beckham crew temporarily ditched their posh London home in favor of Italy. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, "Harper Beckham Looks So Grown Up on Vacation with Her Family," 15 Aug. 2019 The International Space Station is constantly crewed. Gary Robbins, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Back story: Don’t forget San Diego when celebrating Apollo 11," 21 July 2019 But in the late 1960s, NASA blew past Roscosmos with the Apollo program, with the first crewed mission to the moon and, of course, the mission that enabled the first people to walk on the moon. Time Staff, Time, "Here's Every Single Mission to the Moon in One Chart," 18 July 2019 The eighth crewed mission in the United States Apollo program, Apollo 14 was the third to land on the Moon and the first to touch down in the lunar highlands. Casey Smith, Indianapolis Star, "Across Indiana, trees are growing from seeds that went to the Moon. Here's where you can find them.," 17 July 2019 When the Stranger Things crew first wrapped season 1 — and long before the sci-fi series was a phenomenon — the cast had no idea what was next. Ariana Romero,, "Stranger Things Star Natalia Dyer On The Upside-Down Of Fame," 4 July 2019 During the ten-day flight, the astronauts tested the craft's descent engine while coupled to the command module, lifting both spacecraft to a lofty 300-mile orbit and marking the first crewed throttling of an engine in space. Ernie Mastroianni, Discover Magazine, "Travel With Apollo 9 As They Launch to Space 50 Years Ago," 1 Mar. 2019

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1935, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for crew


Middle English crue, from Middle French, reinforcement, literally, increase, from crue, feminine past participle of croistre to grow, from Latin crescere — more at crescent

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Dictionary Entries near crew





crew chief

crew cut


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Time Traveler for crew

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

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More Definitions for crew



English Language Learners Definition of crew

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the group of people who operate a ship, airplane, or train
: the people who work on a ship except the officers and captain
: a group of people who do a specified kind of work together



English Language Learners Definition of crew (Entry 2 of 2)

: to work as a member of a crew that operates a ship or airplane


\ ˈkrü How to pronounce crew (audio) \

Kids Definition of crew

1 : the group of people who operate a ship, train, or airplane
2 : a group of people working together the news crew
3 : a gathering of people Mom feeds a large crew on holidays.

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More from Merriam-Webster on crew

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with crew

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for crew

Spanish Central: Translation of crew

Nglish: Translation of crew for Spanish Speakers

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

Comments on crew

What made you want to look up crew? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to make a temporary encampment

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