in·​hab·​it | \ in-ˈha-bət How to pronounce inhabit (audio) \
inhabited; inhabiting; inhabits

Definition of inhabit

transitive verb

1 : to occupy as a place of settled residence or habitat : live in inhabit a small house
2 : to be present in or occupy in any manner or form the human beings who inhabit this tale— Al Newman

intransitive verb

archaic : to have residence in a place : dwell

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Other Words from inhabit

inhabitable \ in-​ˈha-​bə-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce inhabit (audio) \ adjective
inhabiter noun

Examples of inhabit in a Sentence

Several hundred species of birds inhabit the island. This part of the country is inhabited by native tribes. There is a romantic quality that inhabits all her paintings. The novel is inhabited by a cast of eccentric characters.
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Recent Examples on the Web The author lucidly explains not only the geological contours of the deep but also the animals that inhabit it. Benjamin Shull, The Christian Science Monitor, 7 July 2021 The IMDbrief report also offers us an interesting tidbit from Eternals when describing these powerful beings who inhabit the Earth. Chris Smith, BGR, 13 May 2021 His wife, Marie, and their son, Antoine, feature prominently on the vlogs, however, and have become a beloved part of the roving cast of Lalanders who inhabit the chateau. Martha Shade, CNN, 9 May 2021 The adaptation of the best-selling young adult fantasy novels about a world of magic and the people who inhabit different roles there. Washington Post, 23 Apr. 2021 Surrounded by an unforgiving desert and forever isolated on a small patch of irrigated ranchland about 50 miles southeast of Yosemite National Park, black toads inhabit the smallest range of any North American amphibian. Los Angeles Times, 8 Apr. 2021 Those actions came about after decades of work by activists and legislators, the people who inhabit King’s moral universe. Lindsay M. Chervinsky, Smithsonian Magazine, 8 Oct. 2020 Asian elephants inhabit forests and grassland, so deforestation rates in Xishuangbanna, which reached an annual average of 4.1 square miles in 2010, may have contributed to the herd’s migration. NBC News, 9 June 2021 If approved, Shake Shack would inhabit the building that formerly housed the Perkins Restaurant & Bakery. Evan Casey, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 8 June 2021

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for inhabit

Middle English enhabiten, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French inhabiter, enhabiter, from Latin inhabitare, from in- + habitare to dwell, frequentative of habēre to have — more at give

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Time Traveler for inhabit

Time Traveler

The first known use of inhabit was in the 14th century

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Last Updated

31 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Inhabit.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Aug. 2021.

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More Definitions for inhabit



English Language Learners Definition of inhabit

: to live in (a place) : to have a home in (a place)
: to be present in (something)


in·​hab·​it | \ in-ˈha-bət How to pronounce inhabit (audio) \
inhabited; inhabiting

Kids Definition of inhabit

: to live or dwell in


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