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 From this simple phenomenon arises most of the space in an atom, the astonishing variety of the periodic table, and all of chemistry. Bosons, on the other hand, are gregarious particles, happy to bunch together and share the same quantum state. Quanta Magazine, "‘Milestone’ Evidence for Anyons, a Third Kingdom of Particles," 12 May 2020 Your bigger than life, gregarious personality will leave a hole in our hearts forever. NBC News, "Longtime soap opera actor John Callahan dies at 66," 29 Mar. 2020 Each of these is a mere two-set fight, and, finally, Toby’s father is again the gregarious host of old. Han Ong, The New Yorker, "Futures," 23 Mar. 2020 The gregarious man at the farmer’s market fruit stand, who asks about my family in the U.S. Colleen De Bellefonds, SELF, "As an American Expat in Paris, Boulangeries Are My Source of Comfort Right Now," 28 Apr. 2020 Frank Williams, a gregarious and well-liked fire official from Engine 44, Ladder 18 on the city's west side, had died from complications from the coronavirus. USA Today, "Heartbreak, prayer and mourning: US leads world in coronavirus deaths after deadliest week," 15 Apr. 2020 Married and the father of four adult children, Dr. Hahn is widely praised as gregarious and a quick study. Thomas M. Burton, WSJ, "No Shortage of Controversies for New FDA Commissioner," 29 Jan. 2020 Willie Wilkerson Vietnam veteran, former firefighter, gregarious friend Aretha Franklin's former romantic partner and longtime friend Willie Wilkerson died April 4 of COVID-19., "We will remember: Tributes to a few of the metro Detroiters who died of coronavirus," 12 Apr. 2020 One of them, gregarious jock Peter Kavinsky (), hatches a plan to pose as a pretend couple that ends up with them — spoiler alert for anyone who’s never seen a rom-com — falling in love for real. Jen Yamatostaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "How Jordan Fisher made #TeamJohn worth rooting for in ‘To All the Boys 2’," 14 Feb. 2020

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

5 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Gregarious.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for gregarious


How to pronounce gregarious (audio)

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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