grassroots

adjective
grass·​roots | \ ˈgras-ˌrüts, -ˌru̇ts\
variants: or less commonly grassroot \ ˈgras-​ˌrüt , -​ˌru̇t \

Definition of grassroots

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : basic, fundamental the grassroots factor in deciding to buy a house
2 : being, originating, or operating in or at the grass roots a grassroots organization grassroots political support
3 : not adapted from or added to an existing facility or operation : totally new a grassroots refinery

Definition of grass roots (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the very foundation or source You must attack the problem at the grass roots.
2 : the basic level of society or of an organization especially as viewed in relation to higher or more centralized positions of power was losing touch with the party's grass roots

Examples of grassroots in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The central organizing force behind the pipeline resistance has been the L’eau Est La Vie camp, a grassroots group taking dynamic action to stop the pipeline. Mary Lovell, Teen Vogue, "Bayou Bridge Pipeline Meets Resistance from the L’eau Est La Vie Camp," 16 Oct. 2018 Beyond that list, there are several dozen additional districts the national party and grassroots groups are eying for signs of competitiveness. Bill Barrow, The Seattle Times, "Democrats look to longshot territory for midterm gains," 13 Aug. 2018 Gonzalez Garcia is the first of six mothers that a grassroots group called Immigrant Families Together have bonded out and helped to reach destinations where their children were sent. Pamela Ren Larson, azcentral, "Guatemalan mother regains custody of her children after 54 days apart," 13 July 2018 As those decisions are made, Clinton is focused on Onward Together, which is working to raise money and strengthen the infrastructure for nearly a dozen grassroots political groups. Bloomberg.com, "Clinton 'Wants to Be Helpful' to Democrats. Can She?," 24 May 2018 Protesters organized by the New York Taxi Workers Alliance, a grassroots group representing 19,000 drivers, descended on City Hall. Jessica Pressler, Daily Intelligencer, "The Tragic End to a Longtime Black-Car Driver’s Campaign Against Uber," 15 May 2018 Since Trump’s election, grassroots groups have become increasingly active across Orange County. Vauhini Vara, The New Republic, "Essential reporting, interpretation, and opinion on politics and culture. Don't miss our latest.," 9 May 2018 While Deutch and Campbell’s group has the most political muscle behind it, grassroots groups are also working to put the issue before voters. Skyler Swisher, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Push is on to let Florida voters decide AR-15 ban," 4 May 2018 The state’s largest grassroots gun-owners group has endorsed Republican Peter Lumaj for governor. Daniela Altimari, courant.com, "CCDL Picks Peter Lumaj for Governor," 25 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun, plural in form but singular or plural in construction

Grass leaves grow much more slowly as the weather turns cool, but the grass roots and rhizomes continue to grow quickly. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, "6 Tips to Get Your Lawn Ready for Fall," 24 Aug. 2018 Even the larvae feed on organic matter and grass roots, potentially causing a great deal of damage to your lawn. The Editors, Good Housekeeping, "How to Defend Your Garden Against Japanese Beetles," 18 June 2018 Barrett is a favorite of the grass roots and would do the most to fire up the base. Jan Crawford, CBS News, "Sen. Susan Collins says she won't support Supreme Court pick with "hostility" to Roe v. Wade," 2 July 2018 What’s going on at the Democratic grass roots is arguably the undercovered story that may tell us more about what happens (or not) on Election Day 2018. Frank Rich, Daily Intelligencer, "Rot on the Right, Green Shoots on the Left," 28 June 2018 He is considered the shining star of a grass roots movement called 5 star that has shaken up the Italian political landscape. Houston Chronicle, "Does the Democratic Party have the talent, money to carry the day?," 22 June 2018 He is considered the shining star of a grass roots movement called 5 star that has shaken up the Italian political landscape. Houston Chronicle, "Does the Democratic Party have the talent, money to carry the day?," 22 June 2018 Having covered the sport on a daily basis, and now on a semi basis, the problem is the problem, and no amount of marketing or gimmick can change it: The sport is simply too expensive to grow on a grass roots level to enjoy large gains. Mac Engel, star-telegram, "NHL has a major event coming to town and you don't even know it," 21 June 2018 Still, there is annoyance with the praise among the Democratic grass roots. Joshua Miller, BostonGlobe.com, "Praise from Democrats is making Baker harder to hit," 7 June 2018

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

Adjective

1907, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun, plural in form but singular or plural in construction

1901, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for grassroots

Adjective

see grass entry 1

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Last Updated

3 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for grassroots

The first known use of grassroots was in 1901

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More Definitions for grassroots

grass roots

noun

English Language Learners Definition of grass roots

: the ordinary people in a society or organization : the people who do not have a lot of money and power

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More from Merriam-Webster on grassroots

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with grassroots

Spanish Central: Translation of grassroots

Nglish: Translation of grassroots for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of grassroots for Arabic Speakers

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