human

1 of 2

adjective

hu·​man ˈhyü-mən How to pronounce human (audio)
ˈyü-
1
: of, relating to, or characteristic of humans (see human entry 2)
the human brain
human voices
problems that have occurred throughout human history
2
: consisting of or involving humans
everyone held hands and made a human chain
human interactions
human spaceflight
3
a
: having human form or attributes
the statue is more human than the beings at his feetClifton Fadiman
b
: representative of or susceptible to the sympathies and frailties of human nature
human kindness
a human weakness
such an inconsistency is very humanP. E. More
humanness noun

human

2 of 2

noun

: a bipedal primate mammal (Homo sapiens) : a person : man sense 1c
usually plural
a disease that affects both humans and animalsincomprehensible to us humansWilliam James
broadly : hominid
the least developed of all ancestral humans A. L. Kroeber
humanlike adjective

Example Sentences

Adjective problems that have occurred throughout human history She is a very kind and human person. The dog's expression was almost human. The assembly line was a human machine. Everyone held hands and formed a human chain. Noun humans are the only mammals not endowed with a natural defense against the elements, such as fur or a thick hide See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Adjective
Mount Hinman and its neighbors gained protection from direct human disturbance in 1976 when they were designated part of the Alpine Lakes Wilderness. John Ryan, oregonlive, 28 Jan. 2023 After his daughter called the police, officers arrived and one of them accused members of the Tamimi family of attacking the settlers, according to the human-rights group. Raja Shehadeh, The New Yorker, 28 Jan. 2023 As a robot specifically built for agile mobility and lacking the free will to do anything other than what its program and human operator dictate, Spot seemed set up for success. Jess Joho, Los Angeles Times, 28 Jan. 2023 In December 2022, the crew member filed a human-rights complaint against the airline in Washington state. Rory Satran, WSJ, 28 Jan. 2023 This past weekend, the Wall Street Journal columnist took to the paper’s doughty op-ed page to sound off on George Santos, the human falsehood fountain who now serves New York’s 3rd congressional district. Jason Linkins, The New Republic, 28 Jan. 2023 For example, your phone uses A.I. to recognize your face and ChatGPT, which made headlines in 2022, can generate human conversations. Kells Mcphillips, Fortune, 28 Jan. 2023 Her family said Sanders, a loving mother, was seriously mentally ill in the years leading up to the killings, obsessed with the Illuminati and human sacrifice, and had refused treatment. BostonGlobe.com, 28 Jan. 2023 Cynthia Curl, PhD, MS, an associate professor who focuses on the intersection between agriculture and human health at Boise State University, said the USDA is making an investment in increasing consumer confidence in the organic label. Stephanie Brown, Verywell Health, 27 Jan. 2023
Noun
Gemma, however, has set her sights on a more ambitious product, a human-like android that bonds with its child owner and learns from their interactions. Brian Lowry, CNN, 5 Jan. 2023 Native American human remains excavated from federal and tribal lands. Dr. Len Necefer, Outside Online, 13 Dec. 2022 The ancient human remains found along the path of the train are kept in cardboard boxes. Whitney Leaming, Washington Post, 9 Dec. 2022 The human remains found in the trunk of the car have not yet been identified. Jenna Prestininzi, Detroit Free Press, 28 Nov. 2022 The human remains found in the Superior Landfill in Savannah, Georgia, on Nov. 18, were confirmed through DNA analysis to be from Simon, who was reported missing Oct. 5 in Georgia, authorities said. Gina Martinez, CBS News, 28 Nov. 2022 City police said last week that human remains discovered in the woods nearby likely belonged to the missing Florida dad. Michael Ruiz, Fox News, 25 Oct. 2022 The Lake County Coroner’s office will conduct a forensic autopsy Monday on a set of partial human remains found in Griffith Saturday morning. Michelle L. Quinn, Chicago Tribune, 22 Oct. 2022 Shipwreck, human remains found in the Mississippi River Decreasing water levels along the Mississippi River, one of the most important trade routes in the country, have been causing ripple effects worldwide. Julia Jacobo, ABC News, 19 Oct. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'human.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Word History

Etymology

Adjective and Noun

Middle English humain, from Anglo-French, from Latin humanus; akin to Latin homo human being — more at homage

First Known Use

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

Noun

1509, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of human was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near human

Cite this Entry

“Human.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/human. Accessed 31 Jan. 2023.

Kids Definition

human

1 of 2 adjective
hu·​man ˈhyü-mən How to pronounce human (audio)
ˈyü-
1
: relating to or characteristic of human beings
especially : showing qualities typical of human beings
a human failing
2
: consisting of human beings
the human race
3
: having human form or characteristics
the dog's expression was almost human
humanness noun

human

2 of 2 noun
: a human being
humanlike adjective

Medical Definition

human

1 of 2 adjective
hu·​man ˈhyü-mən How to pronounce human (audio) ˈyü- How to pronounce human (audio)
1
a
: of, relating to, or characteristic of humans
the human body
human biochemistry
b
: primarily or usually harbored by, affecting, or attacking humans
human diseases
human parasites
2
: being or consisting of humans
the human race
3
: consisting of members of the family Hominidae : hominid
humanness noun

human

2 of 2 noun
: a bipedal primate mammal of the genus Homo (H. sapiens) : man
broadly : hominid
humanlike adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on human

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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


Words Named After People

  • name tags
  • Namesake of the leotard, Jules Léotard had what profession?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Solve today's spelling word game by finding as many words as you can with using just 7 letters. Longer words score more points.

Can you make 12 words with 7 letters?

PLAY