noun (1)
\ ˈhȯrd How to pronounce hoard (audio) \
plural hoards

Definition of hoard

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a supply or fund stored up and often hidden away a hoard of cash


hoarded; hoarding; hoards

Definition of hoard (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to collect and often hide away a supply of : to accumulate a hoard (see hoard entry 1) of hoarding food
2 : to keep (something, such as one's thoughts) to oneself she hoarded her intention— Virginia Woolf the people outside disperse their affections, you hoard yours, you nurse them into intensity— Joseph Conrad

intransitive verb

: to collect and often hide away a supply of something specifically : to engage in compulsive hoarding One thing people who hoard have in common is a skewed perceived value of possessions. My Edmonds News (Edmonds, Washington)


noun (2)
plural hoards

Definition of hoard (Entry 3 of 3)

: a temporary board fence put around a building being erected or repaired : hoarding entry 2 sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of hoard in a Sentence

Noun (1) a squirrel's hoard of nuts keeps a hoard of empty yogurt containers in his basement workshop for storing whatnots Verb he's been hoarding empty yogurt containers all winter, with the intention of using them to start seedlings in the spring
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The French, for instance, are returning their hoard of Benin bronzes, some from the 16th century, to present-day Nigeria. Brian T. Allen, National Review, "Art Tends for 2020: The Big Apple Is Not So Big in the Art World Anymore," 4 Jan. 2020 Anyone who suspects an animal has been abused, neglected, is part of a hoard or being tortured, is asked to report it at www.927PAWS.org or by calling 832-927-PAWS. Roy Kent, Houston Chronicle, "Harris County Precinct 5 deputies remove exotic pets from abandoned apartment," 18 Dec. 2019 The Democratic governor, Gavin Newsom, has called on technology companies to contribute more and asked big corporations to use their substantial cash hoards to aid state housing efforts through instruments like low-interest loans. Conor Dougherty, New York Times, "Facebook Pledges $1 Billion to Ease Housing Crisis Inflamed by Big Tech," 22 Oct. 2019 For those who arrived with a little hoard of money, or who have family that can occasionally wire them a few dollars, that’s not a big problem. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Cries in the night: Life in the limbo of a Mexican shelter," 18 Sep. 2019 German jewel heist thieves walked off with a 49 carat diamond among the hoard of priceless jewels stolen. Petra Cahill, NBC News, "Thanksgiving Day Parade balloons, Trump's trade war, and what to binge watch this holiday: The Morning Rundown," 28 Nov. 2019 Abrams Books Before the hoards of Instagram influencers started flooding our feeds with wanderlust-inducing square snapshots, there was the master of the inspiring travel photograph: Gray Malin. Rachel King, Fortune, "Gift Guide: The Best Books to Gift People You Know Well—and People You Don’t," 16 Nov. 2019 Using the cash hoard, Mr. Son poured money into fledgling companies across the world, many of which have a business model of hiring contractors who deliver their services. New York Times, "The SoftBank Effect: How $100 Billion Left Workers in a Hole," 12 Nov. 2019 Railroads, newly connecting the nation, hauled away the hoards of slate-blue bodies with russet breasts to far-off cities. Ashley Braun, Longreads, "Research and Rescue: Saving Species from Ourselves," 24 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Newsletter Sign-up Expectations for capital expenditures have declined in recent years as companies look to slash costs and hoard cash. Mark Maurer, WSJ, "CFOs’ Concerns About the Economy, Talent Shortage Seep Into 2020," 31 Dec. 2019 According to the International OCD Foundation, hoarding disorder affects up to 6% of the U.S. population, or 19 million Americans. Tresa Baldas, USA TODAY, "80-year-old woman lived in filth. Nobody knew until she was found dead, eaten by her dog.," 1 Aug. 2019 If not, a golden retriever will slowly hoard them throughout the day and bring them back to his lair. Lauren Young, USA TODAY, "Toys were 'stolen' from a police holiday drive. Their therapy puppy was to blame," 20 Dec. 2019 Dimora, along with former County Auditor Frank Russo, hoarded unparalleled political power, taking bribes for favors. Mary Kilpatrick, cleveland, "2012, the year of the Chardon school shooting, and Jimmy Dimora’s sentencing: Biggest stories of 2010s," 19 Dec. 2019 Check for hoarding or evidence that dogs are kept outside with inadequate shelter, food and water, the cards advise. Josh Kovner, courant.com, "Animal cruelty is often the first red flag: Nearly 50 animal abuse reports in Connecticut linked to child endangerment in past two years," 9 Dec. 2019 He had been terrorized living in a dog hoarding situation. Alyssa Mastromonaco, NBC News, "Former Obama aide Alyssa Mastromonaco on the love for her cats: 'They put everything in perspective'," 3 Dec. 2019 Pulling off a trade like that, however, flies in the face of what has been their over-arching strategy in hoarding pitching prospects. Anthony Fenech, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Tigers mailbag: Assessing Miguel Cabrera's ceiling, chances of 'blockbuster' deal," 20 Nov. 2019 On campuses across the city, protesters have been hoarding mountains of supplies—food, water, clothes and weapons—as if preparing for a weeks-long siege. Time, "Foreign Students Are Fleeing Hong Kong as Protests Escalate on College Campuses," 15 Nov. 2019

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

Noun (1)

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


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

Noun (2)

1757, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hoard

Noun (1) and Verb

Middle English hord, from Old English; akin to Goth huzd treasure, Old English hȳdan to hide

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about hoard

Time Traveler for hoard

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for hoard

Last Updated

10 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Hoard.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hoard. Accessed 19 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for hoard



English Language Learners Definition of hoard

: to collect and hide a large amount of (something valuable)


\ ˈhȯrd How to pronounce hoard (audio) \

Kids Definition of hoard

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a supply usually of something of value stored away or hidden


hoarded; hoarding

Kids Definition of hoard (Entry 2 of 2)

: to gather and store away Squirrels hoard nuts for winter.

Other Words from hoard

hoarder noun

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on hoard

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for hoard

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hoard

Spanish Central: Translation of hoard

Nglish: Translation of hoard for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hoard for Arabic Speakers

Comments on hoard

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


to insert between existing elements

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Eponym Quiz

  • rubens painting
  • Which is the best synonym of bowdlerize?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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