geek

noun
\ ˈgēk How to pronounce geek (audio) \

Definition of geek

1 : a person often of an intellectual bent who is disliked
2 : an enthusiast or expert especially in a technological field or activity computer geek
3 : a carnival performer often billed as a wild man whose act usually includes biting the head off a live chicken or snake

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from geek

geekiness noun
geeky \ ˈgē-​kē How to pronounce geek (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for geek

Synonyms

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Of Nerds, Geeks, and Dorks

Dork, when used to refer to a socially awkward or inept person, is a relatively recent word: our records indicate that it first appeared in writing in the 1960s. Two of its synonyms in this sense are likewise of fairly recent vintage. Nerd (typically used of a studious species of dork) dates from the 1950s; it was coined by Dr. Seuss in his 1950 book If I Ran the Zoo, although not in the sense that we use today. Geek became synonymous with nerd in the 1950s. Prior to this, the word referred to, among other things, a carnival performer who would bite the head off a live chicken, or other small animal, as part of an act.

Examples of geek in a Sentence

He was a real geek in high school. was quickly stereotyped as another computer geek
Recent Examples on the Web Mention Arkansas around any waterfowl geek and their eyes glaze over. Jace Bauserman, Field & Stream, "5 Great Late-Season Hunting Trips," 21 Dec. 2020 But there are enough movie-geek nuggets in each 44-minute installment to remind you that stocking stuffers count as gifts, too. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Netflix series unwraps the stories behind holiday movie classics," 18 Dec. 2020 My housemate is not a geek, but sometimes civilians have much to teach us. Laurie Penny, Wired, "My Highly Unexpected Heterosexual Pandemic Zoom Wedding," 13 Dec. 2020 LeMond – a longtime design geek who’s made bikes, fitness equipment and even jewelry – will have a hand in the planning. Jason Gay, WSJ, "Congress Makes It Official: Greg LeMond Is Golden," 10 Dec. 2020 Earlier in the interview, Radcliffe, a geek in the world of British quiz shows, mourned the recent loss of Jeopardy! Omar Sanchez, EW.com, "Watch Daniel Radcliffe discover the history of Harry Potter rap lyrics," 3 Dec. 2020 The perfect counterpoint to Butcher is his reluctant co-assassin, a beta male named Hughie who is blasted out of his harmless life as an A/V store geek and into the world of supercombat after his girlfriend gets killed by a negligent superhero. Kyle Smith, National Review, "The Brilliant, Scabrous Satire of The Boys," 30 Nov. 2020 But nowadays, that just means artists and their record labels are extra motivated to unearth, and lavishly package, the demos, alternate takes, live recordings, videos and scrapbooks that will superserve even the most know-it-all music geek. Los Angeles Times, "The music gift guide to get you through 2021," 30 Oct. 2020 Girl Meets World star Rowan Blanchard absolutely shines as Cleo, a science geek and outsider at her school where she is constantly compared to her much more popular older sister, Molly (Paris Leclerc). Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "All of the Best Halloween Disney Movies," 18 Sep. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of geek

1912, in the meaning defined at sense 3

History and Etymology for geek

probably from English dialect geek, geck fool, from Low German geck, from Middle Low German

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about geek

Statistics for geek

Last Updated

17 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Geek.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/geek. Accessed 27 Jan. 2021.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for geek

geek

noun
How to pronounce geek (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of geek

chiefly US, informal
: a person who is socially awkward and unpopular : a usually intelligent person who does not fit in with other people
: a person who is very interested in and knows a lot about a particular field or activity

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on geek

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

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Slippery Words Quiz—Changing with the Times

  • ducreux self portrait yawning
  • What is an earlier meaning of nice?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Typeshift

Anagram puzzles meet word search.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!