cro·​ny ˈkrō-nē How to pronounce crony (audio)
plural cronies
: a close friend especially of long standing : pal
played golf with his cronies

Examples of crony in a Sentence

The mayor rewarded his cronies with high-paying jobs after he was elected. the criminal's cronies were also closely questioned about the illegal gambling operation
Recent Examples on the Web Imagine, his cronies without experience or knowledge as domestic and international advisers merely acquiescing to his whims. Letters To The Editor, The Mercury News, 15 Mar. 2024 While busting those involved, Bugas found several Bennett cronies complicit. Jack Kresnak, Detroit Free Press, 28 Jan. 2024 And yet Griffin had no qualms in recommending that his followers ‘get out and vote for George Galloway’ and ‘stick two fingers up to the rotten political elite and their fake news media cronies’. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, 11 Mar. 2024 Many of the farms were then turned over to Mugabe’s cronies, who subsequently did not harvest the land, further contributing to Zimbabwe’s economic collapse. George Ramsay, CNN, 9 Feb. 2024 Xi and his cronies in the Forbidden City will have shut down a critical engine of economic motivation and growth. Milton Ezrati, Forbes, 1 Mar. 2024 That same day, his anticorruption movement released a 110-minute expose detailing years of graft by Putin and his cronies. Anna Nemtsova, USA TODAY, 24 Feb. 2024 Earmarks are just a legislative parlor trick that allows individual members of Congress to mandate spending on specific projects, which often – but not always – benefit their cronies or some special interest. Eleanor Dearman, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 15 Feb. 2024 The West does, of course, have an interest in preventing a certain class of Russians from enjoying life in its cities: Putin’s cronies. Aleksei Miniailo, Foreign Affairs, 28 Dec. 2023

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

Word History


perhaps from Greek chronios long-lasting, from chronos time

First Known Use

1656, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of crony was in 1656

Dictionary Entries Near crony

Cite this Entry

“Crony.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


cro·​ny ˈkrō-nē How to pronounce crony (audio)
plural cronies
: a close companion : pal
politicians who get jobs for their cronies

More from Merriam-Webster on crony

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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