gre·​gar·​i·​ous | \ gri-ˈger-ē-əs How to pronounce gregarious (audio) \

Definition of gregarious

1a : tending to associate with others of one's kind : social gregarious animals
b : marked by or indicating a liking for companionship : sociable is friendly, outgoing, and gregarious
c : of or relating to a social group
2a of a plant : growing in a cluster or a colony
b : living in contiguous nests but not forming a true colony used especially of wasps and bees

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Other Words from gregarious

gregariously adverb
gregariousness noun

Did You Know?

When you're one of the herd, it's tough to avoid being social. The etymology of gregarious reflects the social nature of the flock; in fact, the word grew out of the Latin noun grex, meaning "herd" or "flock." When it first began appearing in English texts in the 17th century, "gregarious" was applied mainly to animals, but by the 18th century it was being used for social human beings as well. By the way, "grex" gave English a whole flock of other words too, including "egregious," "aggregate," "congregate," and "segregate."

Examples of gregarious in a Sentence

[J.P.] Morgan was attracted to bright, self-possessed women who met him on his own ground, felt at home in society, and shared his gregarious instincts and sybaritic tastes. — Jean Strouse, New Yorker, 29 Mar. 1999 … the gregarious trade unionist whose back-slapping mateyness helped make him Australia's most popular politician. Time, 3 Apr. 1989 As it is a night of many parties, the more social, the more gregarious, the more invited of the guests are wondering whether to go to Harley Street first, or whether to arrive there later, after sampling other offerings. — Margaret Drabble, Harper's, July 1987 She is outgoing and gregarious. a gregarious child who ran up to every person on the playground and wanted to be their friend
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Recent Examples on the Web It’s a roster, largely in Europe and the U.K., that numbers five houses, eight galleries and a handful of the shops, guesthouses and cafes that the gregarious couple loves bringing to life. WSJ, "An Idyllic Summer Retreat on the Mediterranean’s Most Laid-Back Isle," 24 Apr. 2021 But the Colts have had success with both approaches, the gregarious, childlike love of the game that Rivers carried and the quieter personality of Luck. Joel A. Erickson, USA TODAY, "Chris Ballard: Carson Wentz's personality is more like that of Andrew Luck than Philip Rivers," 24 Apr. 2021 But the Colts have had success with both approaches, the gregarious, childlike love of the game that Rivers carried and the quieter personality of Luck. Joel A. Erickson, The Indianapolis Star, "Chris Ballard: Carson Wentz's personality is more like Andrew Luck than Philip Rivers," 23 Apr. 2021 Ri was a tall, gregarious, good-looking boy who liked playing volleyball and Ping-Pong. Ed Caesar, The New Yorker, "The Incredible Rise of North Korea’s Hacking Army," 19 Apr. 2021 He’s described by the AP as gregarious and popular. Andy Meek, Forbes, "The Associated Press Published A Moving Obituary For Daunte Wright, Focused On His Humanity," 15 Apr. 2021 Despite those memories of ugliness, Elder is warm, gregarious, and beloved by his fellow golfers. Sam Farmer, Los Angeles Times, "It’s about respect: Lee Elder joins ceremonial tee shot to open Masters," 6 Apr. 2021 Richardson is friendly and gregarious; Miles is shyer, and it’s sometimes hard to hear him at all. Hua Hsu, The New Yorker, "The Rise of the Athlete Podcaster," 29 Mar. 2021 Herrick, a gregarious karaoke singer, is routinely reminded that part of that day in 2017 always will remain with them. Bryce Miller Columnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Heartwarming horse-racing finish arrives for Joe Herrick, Lovely Finish," 24 Mar. 2021

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

1668, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for gregarious

Latin gregarius of a flock or herd, from greg-, grex flock, herd

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Time Traveler for gregarious

Time Traveler

The first known use of gregarious was in 1668

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Last Updated

3 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Gregarious.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for gregarious



English Language Learners Definition of gregarious

: enjoying the company of other people
biology : tending to live in groups


gre·​gar·​i·​ous | \ gri-ˈger-ē-əs How to pronounce gregarious (audio) \

Kids Definition of gregarious

1 : enjoying the company of other people
2 : tending to live in a flock, herd, or community rather than alone gregarious insects

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