mi·​grant | \ ˈmī-grənt How to pronounce migrant (audio) \

Definition of migrant

: one that migrates: such as
a : a person who moves regularly in order to find work especially in harvesting crops
b : an animal that shifts from one habitat to another

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from migrant

migrant adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for migrant


emigrant, émigré (also emigré), immigrant, in-migrant, incomer [chiefly British], out-migrant, settler



Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of migrant in a Sentence

migrants in search of work on farms Not all birds are migrants.

Recent Examples on the Web

Almost 10,000 Syrians got to Greece in August, mostly by sea, the highest monthly total since Mr Erdogan and the EU signed a deal to stem the flow of migrants and refugees into Europe in 2016. The Economist, "Turkey tightens restrictions on Syrian refugees," 5 Sep. 2019 That the vice president could speak so frequently and emotionally of his family’s immigration story while President Donald Trump has taken such a hard line on migrants and refugees has struck some as hypocritical. Maureen Groppe, USA TODAY, "Mike Pence has a deep affection for Ireland. It's not completely reciprocated," 2 Sep. 2019 Meanwhile, Democratic lawmakers have ratcheted up criticisms of conditions at the border, assailing the treatment of migrants and refusing to provide additional funding for a border wall. Fox News, "US troops deployed to Mexico border eligible for medal," 21 Aug. 2019 In the America presented on their news and opinion website, WesternJournal.com, tradition-minded patriots face ceaseless assault by anti-Christian bigots, diseased migrants and race hustlers concocting hate crimes. Justin Bank, New York Times, "Big Tech, a Conservative Provocateur and the Fight Over Disinformation," 21 Aug. 2019 The Ocean Viking, a Norwegian ship managed by the nonprofits Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and SOS Méditerranée, is one of several migrant and refugee rescue vessels stranded in the Mediterranean. Annalisa Merelli, Quartz, "A stranded migrant rescue ship used its route to send a secret message to the world," 21 Aug. 2019 O’Rourke has staked his campaign on a contrast with President Donald Trump’s alarmism about border security, migrants and refugees. Todd J. Gillman, Dallas News, "Did Beto O'Rourke make the right call by skipping the Iowa State Fair after El Paso massacre?," 9 Aug. 2019 Libya became a major conduit for African migrants and refugees fleeing to Europe after the 2011 uprising that ousted and killed longtime ruler Moammar Gadhafi. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Libyans intercept boat carrying 75 Europe-bound migrants," 3 Aug. 2019 The country is embroiled in a furious debate over the conditions of U.S. immigration detention facilities, as violence and poverty in Central America sends many refugees and migrants northward. James Sergent, USA Today, "What first-hand government reports say about conditions at migrant detention centers," 16 July 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of migrant

1672, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for migrant

Latin migrant-, migrans, present participle of migrare

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about migrant

Statistics for migrant

Last Updated

12 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for migrant

The first known use of migrant was in 1672

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for migrant



English Language Learners Definition of migrant

: a person who goes from one place to another especially to find work
: a bird or animal that moves from one area to another at different times of the year


mi·​grant | \ ˈmī-grənt How to pronounce migrant (audio) \

Kids Definition of migrant

: a person or animal that migrates

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on migrant

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for migrant

Spanish Central: Translation of migrant

Nglish: Translation of migrant for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of migrant for Arabic Speakers

Comments on migrant

What made you want to look up migrant? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


authorized for issue (as a bond)

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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