hud·​dle | \ ˈhə-dᵊl How to pronounce huddle (audio) \
huddled; huddling\ ˈhəd-​liŋ How to pronounce huddling (audio) , ˈhə-​dᵊl-​iŋ \

Definition of huddle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 British : to arrange carelessly or hurriedly the solemnities had to be huddled through at express speedManchester Examiner
2a : to crowd together Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses, yearning to breathe free …— Emma Lazarus
b : to draw (oneself) together : crouch People were huddled around their radios.
3 : to wrap oneself closely in huddled her coat around her

intransitive verb

1a : to gather in a close-packed group They huddled around the campfire.
b : to curl up : crouch Students huddled over their desks.
2a : to hold a consultation huddled to discuss the proposal
b football : to gather away from the line of scrimmage to receive instructions (as from the quarterback) for the next down (see down entry 5 sense 3b) : to gather in a huddle (see huddle entry 2 sense 2b)



Definition of huddle (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a close-packed group : bunch huddles of children a huddle of cottages
2a : meeting, conference The boss is in a huddle with the marketing director.
b football : a brief gathering of players away from the line of scrimmage to receive instructions (as from the quarterback) for the next down (see down entry 5 sense 3b)

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Other Words from huddle


huddler \ ˈhəd-​lər How to pronounce huddler (audio) , ˈhə-​dᵊl-​ər \ noun

Examples of huddle in a Sentence


We huddled around the campfire. The sheep huddled together for warmth. The students huddled over their desks. Union representatives are huddling to discuss the proposal.


sheep standing in a huddle The boss is in a huddle with the marketing director. The quarterback called the offense into a huddle.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Without those calf shelters, Mr. Roseland said, the calves can get buried in the snow or trampled by cows huddling together for warmth. Jake Holland, WSJ, "Heavy Snow in the Plains in April: A Rancher’s Struggle," 11 Apr. 2019 On that cool and humid August day in Michigan, the team huddled together for the first run of the season. Amy Rushlow, SELF, "Running Changed My Life When I Was a Teen—and Now It’s Helping Me Find Myself Again," 26 July 2018 For the last time, the 2017-18 Zionsville Eagles huddled on the court and formed a circle of sorrow. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: A senior and a single word help Zionsville wade through heartbreak," 25 Feb. 2018 A half-dozen men and boys huddled from the rain last Tuesday beneath a portico across the street from another, Catholic Church-run shelter on the other side of Tapachula. Dudley Althaus,, "Migration slows in Mexico. But will it last?," 23 June 2019 The whole family huddled in his hospital room to mark the occasion. Sarah Horner, Twin Cities, "Man shot by woman in Roseville is father of five. Injuries have left him paralyzed, at least for now, his wife says.," 17 June 2019 In one corner overlooking Hong Kong's famous harbor skyline, 28-year-old Quincy crouched under her umbrella, huddled with a group of Catholic university students. Robyn Dixon,, "In Hong Kong, masses turn out in ‘last battle’ against China extradition bill," 11 June 2019 Abrams, the Democrat who earned national attention after narrowly losing her bid for governor last year, will huddle next week with film industry leaders June 11 in Los Angeles, an Abrams spokesman told The Washington Post on Tuesday (June 4). Hamza Shaban,, "Rather than boycotting Georgia, filmmakers urged to #StayAndFight," 5 June 2019 People were huddled in large groups awaiting direction as gate attendants provided limited information. Wendy Lee,, "LAX loses power, leaving many travelers grounded; Southwest cancels flights," 5 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The night of June 14, Jata and Mzingo slept in a huddle across the hall from Ola, who paced excitedly. Dallas News, "Dallas Zoo's new African painted dogs kill packmate," 4 July 2019 Kardashian had lobbied for the law, including at an Oval Office meeting and in huddles with presidential adviser Jared Kushner. Washington Post, "Kim Kardashian will join President Trump for event on hiring of released prisoners," 13 June 2019 Huge sighs of relief on the U.S. bench, and in the huddle around Rapinoe. Andrew Keh, New York Times, "U.S. Holds Off an Ascendant Spain, for Now, at Women’s World Cup," 24 June 2019 The protests continued in the tunnel at halftime, with the Cameroon team emerging on to the pitch early for the restart, forming an intense huddle in the middle of the pitch. Paul Gittings, CNN, "Women's World Cup: Cameroon protests and tears as England reaches last eight," 23 June 2019 Every Wednesday, a small group of dedicated book lovers huddles in a library conference room not far from Sawtelle Japantown. Maria L. La Ganga,, "What's L.A. reading? Our habits are as diverse as the city itself," 6 June 2019 But those huddles have been more hush-hush, disclosed through aides dishing anonymously. Bill Barrow, The Seattle Times, "Jimmy Carter finds a renaissance in 2020 Democratic scramble," 20 May 2019 The researchers’ base shows up as a small huddle of buildings; surrounding it, hundreds of Maya structures stipple the ground in every direction. Nathaniel Scharping, Discover Magazine, "The Lost World of the Maya is Finally Emerging From the Jungle," 7 Feb. 2019 Your information will be used as described in our Privacy Policy With a whistle blown and a quick huddle, the Texans wrapped up their final organized practice of the offseason. Aaron Wilson, Houston Chronicle, "Bill O'Brien pleased as Texans wrap up offseason," 14 June 2018

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


1579, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1586, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for huddle

Verb and Noun

probably from or akin to Middle English hoderen to huddle

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Statistics for huddle

Last Updated

11 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for huddle

The first known use of huddle was in 1579

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More Definitions for huddle



English Language Learners Definition of huddle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to come close together in a group
: to sit or lie in a curled or bent position
: to come together to talk about something privately



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

: a group of people or things that are close to each other
: a private discussion or meeting
American football : a group of players who have gathered away from the line of scrimmage for a short time to hear instructions for the next play


hud·​dle | \ ˈhə-dᵊl How to pronounce huddle (audio) \
huddled; huddling

Kids Definition of huddle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to crowd, push, or pile together People huddled in a doorway until the rain stopped.
2 : to get together to talk something over
3 : to sit or lie in a curled or bent position



Kids Definition of huddle (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a closely packed group Sheep stood in a huddle.
2 : a private meeting or conference
3 : a brief gathering of football players to hear instructions for the next play

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More from Merriam-Webster on huddle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with huddle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for huddle

Spanish Central: Translation of huddle

Nglish: Translation of huddle for Spanish Speakers

Comments on huddle

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characterized by aphorism

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