gath·​er·​ing | \ ˈgat͟h-riŋ How to pronounce gathering (audio) , ˈga-t͟hə- \

Definition of gathering

2 : a suppurating swelling : abscess
3 : the collecting of food or raw materials from the wild
5 : a gather in cloth

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Examples of gathering in a Sentence

I see my cousins only at occasional family gatherings. dinner parties and other social gatherings a gathering of political leaders
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Recent Examples on the Web The home became a renowned gathering spot for politicians, authors and cultural icons, both before and after Robert Kennedy’s assassination in June 1968. Tom Jackman, Washington Post, "Daughter of RFK seeks family heirloom from ‘Hickory Hill,’ but current owner won’t give it up," 2 Aug. 2020 Despite social distancing restrictions, curfews and limits on public gathering sizes, the city of 7.5 million people has had a surge in coronavirus infections since the beginning of July. Fox News, "Hong Kong postpones legislative elections over coronavirus fears," 1 Aug. 2020 Clyburn is demanding that Kemp implement a mask mandate, increase outdoor dining, close bars, reduce indoor dining capacity and social gathering limits and shutter gyms in hot spots. Nyamekye Daniel, Washington Examiner, "Coronavirus oversight panel demands documents from Georgia as GOP congressman calls it harassment," 31 July 2020 The free-fall was driven by a historic pullback in consumer spending as states closed down nonessential businesses such as restaurants, malls and movie theaters, and Americans avoided public gathering spots and travel out of contagion fears. Paul Davidson, USA TODAY, "U.S. economy contracted record 32.9% in Q2 amid state shutdowns, COVID-19 contagion fears," 31 July 2020 In recent years, hanging string lights has become a staple for patios, decks, and other outdoor gathering areas. Hillary Maglin, Travel + Leisure, "These Patio String Lights Will Transform Your Backyard Into a Summertime Sanctuary," 13 July 2020 Confrontations Saturday night appeared to primarily involve federal police at the U.S. courthouse, which has become a gathering point for protesters recently. oregonlive, "Protests continue in Portland for 46th day after demonstrator hospitalized previous night," 13 July 2020 Outdoor areas with patios, walking trails and other gathering areas are also in the plans. Steve Brown, Dallas News, "Landmark Pegasus tower on Stemmons Freeway will anchor new mixed-use project," 10 July 2020 The circular gathering space in the memorial’s center is also roofless. Logan Jaffe, ProPublica, "The Nation’s First Reparations Package to Survivors of Police Torture Included a Public Memorial. Survivors Are Still Waiting.," 3 July 2020

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for gathering

Middle English gaderyng, gederunge, going back to Old English gadrung, gædrung, gegaderung, gegadrung "joining, union, assembly," from gadrian, gaderian "to join, unite, gather entry 1" + -ung -ing entry 3

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Time Traveler for gathering

Time Traveler

The first known use of gathering was before the 12th century

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Statistics for gathering

Last Updated

5 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Gathering.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for gathering


How to pronounce gathering (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of gathering

: an occasion when people come together as a group
: the act or process of gathering something


gath·​er·​ing | \ ˈga-t͟hə-riŋ \

Kids Definition of gathering

: an occasion when people come together as a group a family gathering



Medical Definition of gathering

: a suppurating swelling : abscess

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Comments on gathering

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