noun, often attributive
har·​vest | \ ˈhär-vəst How to pronounce harvest (audio) \

Definition of harvest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the season for gathering in agricultural crops the beginning of the harvest
2 : the act or process of gathering in a crop assisting neighbors in their harvest
3a : a mature crop (as of grain or fruit) : yield bountiful harvests
b : the quantity of a natural product gathered in a single season the salmon harvest timber harvests
4 : an accumulated store or productive result a harvest of revenue


harvested; harvesting; harvests

Definition of harvest (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to gather in (a crop) : reap harvesting corn
b : to gather, catch, hunt, or kill (salmon, oysters, deer, etc.) for human use, sport, or population control
c : to remove or extract (something, such as living cells, tissues, or organs) from culture (see culture entry 1 sense 3) or from a living or recently deceased body especially for transplanting
2a : to accumulate a store of has now harvested this new generation's scholarly labors— M. J. Wiener
b : to win by achievement the team harvested several awards

intransitive verb

: to gather in a crop especially for food sold it standing in the field to save himself the trouble of harvesting— Pearl Buck

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Other Words from harvest


harvestable \ ˈhär-​və-​stə-​bəl How to pronounce harvestable (audio) \ adjective
harvester noun

Synonyms for harvest

Synonyms: Noun


Synonyms: Verb

gather, pick, reap

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Examples of harvest in a Sentence


The beginning of the harvest varies from year to year. It is time for the harvest. They prayed for a bountiful harvest. We had enormous harvests of corn this year.


It is time to harvest the wheat. They want to harvest timber in these woods.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The tiles had been left uncooked beneath Italian lemon trees during the harvest season, so the falling fruit left an impression in the clay. J.w.s.w. | Berlin, The Economist, "The variegated symbolism of gardens in art," 1 Aug. 2019 The dispute stems from a $1.5 million overpayment Huy Fong made to Underwood for the 2016 harvest season. Sarah Favot, The Mercury News, "Sriracha manufacturer owes California jalapeño pepper farmer $23.3 million," 9 July 2019 For California farmers, most immediately the tariffs mean planning difficulties as the harvest season approaches. Samantha Maldonado, latimes.com, "Trade tensions with India and China put California almond growers at risk," 27 June 2019 For California farmers, most immediately the tariffs mean planning difficulties as the harvest season approaches. Washington Post, "India tariffs threaten California almond industry," 27 June 2019 The funneling of state resources into weapons programs, coupled with a poor harvest season and the impact of international sanctions, has created a food crisis for some 10 million North Koreans, 40% of the population. Martin Kuz, The Christian Science Monitor, "In N. Korea nuclear talks, what about human rights?," 20 June 2019 But for the three tax quarters collected so far, covering the peak of the harvest season, the county has received only $4.6 million. Joe Mozingo, San Diego Union-Tribune, "The world’s largest pot farms, and how Santa Barbara opened the door," 12 June 2019 The California Table Grape Commission announced that the industry set a new all-time high record of production during its 2018 peak harvest season, shipping 55 million cartons of fresh table grapes. Michael Greenberg, The New York Review of Books, "Farmworker Anxieties," 21 Feb. 2019 While most working men were serving overseas, women picked up the rakes and began hauling harvests of their own. Emily Toomey, Smithsonian, "The Most Irish Town in America Was Built on Seaweed," 23 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Ciro Rodriguez is one of the people responsible for harvesting agave in the village. Emily Price, Fortune, "How Mezcal’s Boom Is Helping Lift Its Makers Out of Extreme Poverty," 20 July 2019 Corc Yoga, started in 2018, makes its mats from cork harvested in Portugal; the tree is shaved, and the bark can grow back. Mary Billard, Los Angeles Times, "Is your yoga mat bad for the environment?," 19 July 2019 Coastal Alaska Natives are permitted to harvest polar bears for subsistence and crafts, but not in a wasteful way, the outlet reported. Fox News, "Alaska man illegally killed polar bear, left wasting carcass in front yard for months: authorities," 17 July 2019 And then there was Facebook’s reaction to the 2018 Cambridge Analytica breach, in which millions of Facebook users’ personal data was harvested. Barbara Krasnoff, The Verge, "How to post to multiple social networks," 24 June 2019 The sockeye season usually peaks in early July, and most pink salmon is harvested in late July and early August. Annie Zak, Anchorage Daily News, "Early numbers show strong start for commercial sockeye salmon harvest in Prince William Sound," 14 June 2019 Mejia was out in the Coachella Valley this week doing direct outreach, passing out information on the heat protections, along with cooling neck bandanas, to workers harvesting grapes, chili peppers and lemons in the triple-digit desert heat. Julia Wick, latimes.com, "Essential California: Using social media to make sure farmworkers know their rights," 14 June 2019 Forty years ago, science brought us Louise Brown, the first test-tube baby, as IVF was then called, a term that had a creepy sci-fi vibe, like children were being harvested in glass beakers. Kim Brooks, Harper's BAZAAR, "The New Frontier of Fertility Tests—for Young Women," 1 Nov. 2018 New this summer, the nonprofit Wellfleet SPAT (Shellfish Promotion and Tasting) is offering a series of farm tours designed to teach visitors how shellfish are grown and harvested in local waters. Necee Regis, BostonGlobe.com, "Here, there, and everywhere," 10 July 2018

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


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


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for harvest

Noun and Verb

Middle English hervest, from Old English hærfest; akin to Latin carpere to pluck, gather, Greek karpos fruit

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Statistics for harvest

Last Updated

8 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for harvest

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

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More Definitions for harvest



English Language Learners Definition of harvest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the season when crops are gathered from the fields or the activity of gathering crops
: the amount of crops that are gathered also : the amount of a natural product gathered in a single season



English Language Learners Definition of harvest (Entry 2 of 2)

: to gather (a crop)
: to gather or collect (something) for use


har·​vest | \ ˈhär-vəst How to pronounce harvest (audio) \

Kids Definition of harvest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the gathering of a crop
2 : the season when crops are gathered
3 : a ripe crop They passed miles of naked grapevines, stripped of their harvest— Pam Muñoz Ryan, Esperanza Rising


harvested; harvesting

Kids Definition of harvest (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to gather in a crop
2 : to gather or collect for use harvest timber

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More from Merriam-Webster on harvest

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for harvest

Spanish Central: Translation of harvest

Nglish: Translation of harvest for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of harvest for Arabic Speakers

Comments on harvest

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


a period when something is suspended

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