\ ˈhōm How to pronounce home (audio) \

Definition of home

 (Entry 1 of 6)

1a : one's place of residence : domicile has been away from home for two weeks a place to call home
b : house several homes for sale in the area
2 : the social unit formed by a family living together trying to make a good home for her children comes from a broken home
3a : a familiar or usual setting : congenial environment also : the focus of one's domestic attention home is where the heart is
b : habitat the home of the kangaroo The island is home to many species of birds.
4a : a place of origin salmon returning to their home to spawn also : one's own country having troubles at home and abroad
b : headquarters sense 2 home of the dance company
5 : an establishment providing residence and care for people with special needs homes for the elderly
6 : the objective in various games especially : home plate
at home
1 : relaxed and comfortable : at ease felt completely at home on the stage
2 : in harmony with the surroundings
3 : on familiar ground : knowledgeable teachers at home in their subject fields



Definition of home (Entry 2 of 6)

1 : to or at one's place of residence or home (see home entry 1 sense 1a) told the dog to go home stayed home all day
2a : to a final, closed, or ultimate position drive a nail home
b : to or at an ultimate objective (such as a goal or finish line) fired the puck home
3 : to a vital sensitive core the truth struck home
home free
: out of jeopardy : in a comfortable position with respect to some objective

Definition of home (Entry 3 of 6)

1 : of, relating to, or being a place of residence, place of origin, or base of operations the company's home office
2 : prepared, done, or designed for use in a home (see home entry 1) home remedies home cooking a home entertainment system
3 : operating or occurring in an area that is a headquarters or base of operations the home team home games


homed; homing

Definition of home (Entry 4 of 6)

intransitive verb

1 : to go or return to one's place of residence or origin : to go or return home (see home entry 1) let us home
2 of an animal : to return accurately to one's native area of place of birth or origin from a distance : to return home The salmon will home to spawn.
3 : to move to or toward an objective by following a signal or landmark usually used with on or inmissiles homing in on a targetmariners … sought the dark spires of Oakland's redwoods to home on— J. W. Noble
4 : to proceed or direct attention toward an objective science is homing in on the mysterious human process— Sam Glucksberg

transitive verb

: to send to or provide with a home hidden pools and much wider creeks each of which homed its cranes— I. L. Idriess


biographical name (1)
\ ˈhyüm How to pronounce Home (audio) , ˈhōm \

Definition of Home (Entry 5 of 6)

Sir Alec Douglas- 1903–1995 British prime minister (1963–64)


biographical name (2)

Definition of Home (Entry 6 of 6)

William Douglas- 1912–1992 brother of Alec Douglas-Home British dramatist

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Examples of home in a Sentence

Noun Right now his home is a small apartment. People are concerned about protecting their homes. They have a second home on the lake. There's no place like home. I must have left my notes at home. She made a good home for her husband and children. The islands are home to many species of birds. Can you find homes for these files in your office? Adverb She called home to say she would be late for dinner. He's sending money home from a job overseas. She is on her way home. It's great to be back home. I can't wait to come home. He used a hammer to drive the nail home. Adjective She has a happy home life. Please give us your home phone number. What is your home address? The team opens its home season in just two weeks.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Be sure to check out our other buying guides, including our favorite cheap headphones, gifts for beer and wine lovers and stuff people who work from home. Wired, "15 Delightful Gifts for Music Lovers and Audiophiles," 18 Nov. 2019 Taylor Williams was reported missing from her Jacksonville, Fla., home earlier this month. Fox News, "Mother of missing Florida girl Taylor Williams, 5, out of coma after apparent suicide attempt, reports say," 18 Nov. 2019 Washington covers by nearly eight points a contest away from home. Chris Wassel, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Wizards-Magic odds: Orlando laying 7.5 points," 17 Nov. 2019 Evidence seized from his home included rope, zip ties and manuals on knot tying, prosecutors said. Ben Kesslen, NBC News, "New York man allegedly tried to kidnap sex workers for trafficking," 16 Nov. 2019 That season’s Heat team didn’t lose at AmericanAirlines Arena until its ninth home game. Khobi Price, sun-sentinel.com, "Heat hold off short-handed Pelicans, stay undefeated at home with 109-94 win," 16 Nov. 2019 Sam, dissatisfied with his life in the city, ran away from home to begin a life in the wilderness. Jennifer Billock, Smithsonian, "Six Spots Around the World Where You Can Try Your Hand at Falconry," 15 Nov. 2019 But the state said that the $8,000 taken from the home was in a pink purse belonging to his wife and does not belong to the defendant. Sonia Chopra, Cincinnati.com, "Hearings continue in West Chester family shooting case," 15 Nov. 2019 And an article from Quartzy traces the shift back to the 1980s, when more women began working outside the home and earning income of their own. Samantha Leach, Glamour, "Women Will Buy Their Own Damn Jewelry, Thank You Very Much," 15 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Since late January, spreadsheets and lists identifying people living in or returning home from Wuhan have been circulating around social media, including Weibo. Shelly Banjo, Bloomberg.com, "China’s Surveillance State Pushed to the Limits in Virus Fight," 7 May 2020 Ward is a 2008 graduate who initially returned home after playing college basketball at Youngstown State. Matt Goul, cleveland, "Ashen Ward returns to Villa Angela-St. Joseph as boys basketball coach," 6 May 2020 Librarians can read a virtual book and show students options that can be delivered to class for students to take home and read. Dr. Tanya Altmann, CNN, "School must look much different this fall to keep kids safe, says pediatrician," 5 May 2020 So far, only a handful of Oregon restaurants and bars have publicly announced plans to shut for good, though that number is expected to grow quickly as Oregonians continue to stay home and our food businesses are limited to takeout and delivery. oregonlive, "Oregon restaurants and bars that closed permanent during coronavirus crisis," 4 May 2020 Hodgson was clear about islands: Stay home and far away from them. Lavie Tidhar, Washington Post, "Desert-island books: Science fiction tales set in isolation that feel just right now," 4 May 2020 Normally that would include keeping the doors open for its J. Crew and Madewell stores, but sales at those outlets vanished when the coronavirus forced shoppers to stay home and nonessential businesses to shut. Rick Green And Shannon D. Harrington, Time, "U.S. Retailer J. Crew Files for Bankruptcy as Sales Flag Amid Pandemic," 4 May 2020 Normally that would include keeping the doors open for its J. Crew and Madewell stores, but sales at those outlets vanished when the coronavirus forced shoppers to stay home and nonessential businesses to shut. Fortune, "J. Crew files for bankruptcy as pandemic crushes struggling sales," 4 May 2020 Here are the most important developments: Roughly a quarter of the nation’s overall deaths are nursing home and long-term care facility residents and staff — more than 16,000 people. Joel Shannon, USA TODAY, "Coronavirus live updates: Thousands of deaths tied to nursing homes; testing holds back California from reopening," 2 May 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The Astros were scheduled to play two home exhibition games and six regular season games at Minute Maid Park prior to April 9 — the earliest date on which the schedule will resume. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Astros' George Springer donates $100K to Minute Maid Park employees," 14 Mar. 2020 The Hawks will play two home exhibition games at Georgia Tech’s McCamish Pavilion (Oct. 9 and Oct. 12) as Philips Arena undergoes renovation. Michael Cunningham, ajc, "Game thread: Hawks at Heat (exhibition)," 1 Oct. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb If lockdowns continue into summer, what will happen when the heat and humidity soar and home air-conditioners are running all day? Susan Shain, New York Times, "Your Energy Bill Is Probably Climbing. Here’s Why.," 29 Apr. 2020 And now, a team of researchers may have homed in on a crucial cache of clues. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, "Researchers Uncover New Evidence That Warrior Women Inspired Legend of Mulan," 29 Apr. 2020 In just three months, labs around the globe have homed in on individual proteins, mapping some of their structures atom by atom at record pace. Sarah Zhang, The Atlantic, "All the Ways Scientists Think a Coronavirus Drug Could Work," 8 Apr. 2020 So Regeneron homed in on the snippet of the virus’ genome that encodes for spike, which boiled down to about 10% of the roughly 30,000 base pairs that make up 2019-nCoV, said senior R&D specialist Kristen Pascal. Damian Garde, STAT, "In the race to develop a coronavirus treatment, Regeneron thinks it has the inside track," 5 Feb. 2020 While other religious relics went to the Catholic Diocese of Kalamazoo and Kalamazoo Valley Museum, the cupola was not claimed or re-homed, said Eileen M. Biehl, communications specialist for the Congregation of St. Joseph in Cleveland. Washington Post, "Sisters of St. Joseph motherhouse demolished in Kalamazoo," 2 Mar. 2020 States, too, tried to bar specific travelers -- Kentucky initially singled out Tennessee, Rhode Island first homed in on New York -- but the bans were later broadened to include all travelers or those from hotspots. Eliott C. Mclaughlin, CNN, "Coronavirus pits cities and states against each other as they try to stop spread from out-of-towners," 31 Mar. 2020 Denmark closed its borders, sent public workers home with pay and encouraged all other employees to work from home. New York Times, "In the Coronavirus Fight in Scandinavia, Sweden Stands Apart," 24 Mar. 2020 The debates in the House over articles of impeachment have homed in on the meta-question that Mueller skipped: What can a political system do about the abuse of a power obtained through abuse of power? Noam Cohen, Wired, "The TV Show ‘Survivor’ Can Help Us Understand Impeachment," 17 Dec. 2019

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


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


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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1802, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for home


Middle English hom, hoome "dwelling, building, one's native town or land," going back to Old English hām "landed property, estate, dwelling, house, inhabited place, native land," going back to Germanic *haima- "dwelling" (whence also Old Saxon & Old Frisian hēm "home, dwelling," Middle Dutch heem, heim "dwelling," Old High German heima "dwelling, homeland," Old Norse heimr "abode, land, this world," Gothic haims "village, countryside, [in compounds] home"), of uncertain origin

Note: A widely accepted etymology sees Germanic *haima- as going back to Indo-European *ḱoi-mo, an o-grade derivative, with a suffix *-mo-, of the verbal base *ḱei- "lie, be at rest." Also from *ḱoi-mo- would be an assumed Greek *koímē or *koîmos "bed," the source of the denominal derivative koimáō, koimân "to put to bed, lay to rest" (see cemetery); further associated are Lithuanian šeimà "family, household members (including servants)," Latvian sàime, Russian Church Slavic sěmĭ "person," sěmija, translating Greek andrápoda "prisoners of war sold as slaves," sěminŭ "slave, household member," Russian sem'já "family," Ukrainian sim'já. (Lithuanian kiẽmas "farmstead, village" and káimas "village" are perhaps related, via a form with a centum outcome of ḱ, or as a loanword from Germanic.) According to an alternative hypothesis, Germanic *haima- goes back to Indo-European *tḱoi̯-mo-, a derivative with *-mo- from Indo-European *tḱei̯- "dwell, inhabit" (in a more traditional representation *ḱþei̯-; see amphictyony). Directly comparable would be Sanskrit kṣémaḥ "habitable," kṣémaḥ or -am (noun) "calm, quiet, safety," which within Sanskrit are direct derivatives from kṣéti "(s/he) dwells." The Baltic and Slavic forms cited above would then be attributable to this form.


Middle English hom, going back to Old English hām, probably from accusative of hām "dwelling, home entry 1" (with parallel forms in other Germanic languages)


from attributive use of home entry 1


derivative of home entry 1

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Learn More about home

Time Traveler for home

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for home

Cite this Entry

“Home.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/home. Accessed 2 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for home


How to pronounce Home (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of home

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: the place (such as a house or apartment) where a person lives
: a family living together in one building, house, etc.
: a place where something normally or naturally lives or is located



English Language Learners Definition of home (Entry 2 of 3)

: to or at the place where you live
: into a finished or final position
sports : to, toward, or into a goal

English Language Learners Definition of home (Entry 3 of 3)

: of or relating to a home or family
: designed to be used in your home : done or made in your home
sports : at a team's own field, stadium, arena, etc.


\ ˈhōm How to pronounce home (audio) \

Kids Definition of home

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the house or apartment where a person lives
2 : the place where a person was born or grew up
3 : habitat The Arctic is the home of polar bears.
4 : a place for the care of people unable to care for themselves an orphans' home
5 : a family living together She comes from a good home.
6 : house entry 1 sense 1 There are new homes for sale.
7 : the goal or point to be reached in some games
at home
: relaxed and comfortable Make yourself at home.



Kids Definition of home (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to or at home It feels good to be home.
2 : to the final place or limit Use a hammer to drive the nail home.

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More from Merriam-Webster on home

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for home

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with home

Spanish Central: Translation of home

Nglish: Translation of home for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of home for Arabic Speakers

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