\ 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 Philips told the Bloomsburg Press Enterprise on Tuesday that people from other states were staying at his home. Chron, "Education head Betsy DeVos quits, cites Trump rhetoric," 7 Jan. 2021 Gatto -- identified by state prosecutors as a 62-year-old cocaine dealer -- was fatally shot at his home at 9545 S.E. 42nd Ave. oregonlive, "3 men face federal charges in spree of violent robberies, 2016 killing of Milwaukie man, records show," 6 Jan. 2021 Wilde, 36, and Styles, 26, were also photographed arriving back at his home in L.A. with their luggage. Emily Tannenbaum, Glamour, "Are Harry Styles and Olivia Wilde Dating? Let’s Investigate the Rumors," 4 Jan. 2021 In the search warrant application, BCA Special Agent Brandon Johnson said the informant told police that Idd had firearms at his home. Steve Karnowski, ajc, "Warrant: Officers tried to buy gun from man shot by police," 4 Jan. 2021 Joan Dempsey Klein, a celebrated champion of women’s rights and the first woman to become presiding judge of a California appellate court, died in her sleep at her home in Santa Monica on Christmas Eve. Deborah Netburn, Los Angeles Times, "Joan Dempsey Klein, a California appellate court judge and a champion of women’s rights, dies at 96," 3 Jan. 2021 When Parker spoke to her on Dec. 7, the fastidious former NASA employee — who proudly displayed a photo with Neil Armstrong at their home in Temple Hills, Md. — reminded her husband of 43 years to collect the mail. Washington Post, "In D.C., Black families reel from the pain of hundreds lost to covid-19 and killings," 30 Dec. 2020 The first came on Ash Wednesday, when Merriam — then 45 years old — died suddenly at his home one day after taking part in Mardi Gras festivities. Mike Scott, NOLA.com, "Before it became the Pickwick Club, the Crescent Billiard Hall wowed as a pool player's paradise," 30 Dec. 2020 The girlfriend met with the officers at her home on Aug. 21, 2019, according to the report and a later statement from the police. Steve Cavendish, BostonGlobe.com, "Nashville suspect’s girlfriend told police he was making bombs, report says," 30 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb When a Colorado restaurant's staff received a generous tip last week, even the kitchen workers got to take some of it home. Ann W. Schmidt, Fox News, "Colorado family leaves $2,021 tip for restaurant staff to split," 10 Jan. 2021 Houk reached the free-throw line with only 2.2 seconds left and knocked down two shots that sent Bay home with a 56-52 win. Matt Goul, cleveland, "Second chances push Bay past Elyria, 56-52, behind Ashton Price’s 20 points," 9 Jan. 2021 Claude Fouet, still full of vim and good humor at age 89 but with memory problems, was among the first in his Paris care home to agree to a vaccination. John Leicester, ajc, "French vaccine rollout slowed by red tape, focus on elderly," 9 Jan. 2021 Wednesday’s events unfold on television from her Capitol Hill home. Author: Maura Judkis, Ellen Mccarthy, Anchorage Daily News, "Capitol mob desecrated a historical workplace - and left behind some disturbing artifacts," 9 Jan. 2021 Sarah, a 24-year-old broadcast journalist, moved home to be a caregiver for her dad, who has amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. Hannah Yasharoff, USA TODAY, "'The Bachelor' recap: Matt James makes his TV debut in a night of franchise firsts, 8 sent home," 5 Jan. 2021 Acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller initially ordered the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz back home and then reversed himself, saying the carrier would remain in the Middle East. NBC News, "Iran tries to increase its leverage in future negotiations with President-elect Biden," 5 Jan. 2021 He's gone home with two majors, had more weeks at world No.1 (111) than anyone other than Tiger Woods (683), Greg Norman (331) and McIlroy (106) and won PGA Tour events every season for his first 13 years. Tom Pilcher, CNN, "How Dustin Johnson's speedy approach could help golf's pace of play," 5 Jan. 2021 Many once-booming coal towns across the country have gone bust, leaving behind legacies of environmental destruction and impoverished conditions for the people who call those places home. Nick Martin, The New Republic, "Who Really Loses When America Phases Out Natural Gas?," 5 Jan. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Virtual care is likely here to stay: Medicare began covering remote appointment benefits in 2019, but limited them to rural areas and non-home settings. oregonlive, "Medicare open enrollment complicated by COVID-19, like everything else in 2020," 12 Oct. 2020 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 Reducing food waste is in everyone’s interest, from chefs to home cooks to the environment. Washington Post, "8 recipes to make the most of those food scraps that otherwise might go to waste," 3 Oct. 2020 Originally an Italian utility, Enel was actually later than some others to home in on wind and solar. Sarah Mcfarlane, WSJ, "The New Green Energy Giants Challenging Exxon and BP," 11 Dec. 2020 So, the challenge was to find a way to train the immune system to home in on proteins in the stalk, Krammer explained. Linda Carroll, NBC News, "Experimental flu vaccine could last for years, early results show," 7 Dec. 2020 This produces a bright radar echo called a broadside flash, which is easy to home in on. Abe Dane, Popular Mechanics, "Remembering the Sea Shadow, America's 'Invisible Warship'," 3 Dec. 2020 That man was Jim Keene, who has missed only five Badgers home games in 45 years. Star Tribune, "Canceled game cancels trip from Singapore (and other odd Paul Bunyan's Axe stories)," 28 Nov. 2020 The sale allows shoppers to navigate discounted options across categories, from personalized gifts for him and her and face masks to home decor and furniture. Hanna Horvath, NBC News, "Small Business Saturday 2020: How to support local businesses," 27 Nov. 2020 People who have come into close contact with someone who has COVID are required to home quarantine for 14 days from the last exposure to the case. Leada Gore | Lgore@al.com, al, "Sports, Halloween, social gatherings led to spike in Alabama COVID cases, officials say," 16 Nov. 2020 Deputies were dispatched to home in the 200 block of Woodland Way in Sylvan Springs at 4:41 p.m. Tuesday after a family member had discovered her and called authorities. Carol Robinson | Crobinson@al.com, al, "Authorities ID woman found dead in Jefferson County home," 29 Oct. 2020

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

Last Updated

15 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Home.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/home. Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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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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