plural noun

mo·​res ˈmȯr-ˌāz How to pronounce mores (audio)
 also  -(ˌ)ēz
: the fixed morally binding customs of a particular group
have tended to withdraw and develop a self-sufficient society of their own, with distinct and rigid moresJames Stirling
: moral attitudes
the evershifting mores of the momentHavelock Ellis
: habits, manners
organized dancing developed a whole set of mores and practices of its ownR. L. Taylor

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Lady Glenconner, who was born only six years after Queen Elizabeth, shares the late monarch’s generational and class-based manners and mores, which demanded the performance of reserve and restraint under the most trying of circumstances. Rebecca Mead, The New Yorker, 6 Feb. 2023 So the fake animal heads collided with real animal rights and Jenner/Kardashian mores, and for a time the explosion swallowed the digisphere whole. Vanessa Friedman, New York Times, 25 Jan. 2023 Specifically, how to accommodate and respect the traditions and mores of a diverse group when setting a common standard for workplace attire. Karla L. Miller, Washington Post, 19 Jan. 2023 In her decades on the throne, cultural mores evolved dramatically, but the queen remained much the same despite being one of the most famous people in the world: reserved, withdrawn, poker-faced and, to most, fundamentally unknowable. Patrick Smith, NBC News, 19 Sep. 2022 That’s perfectly in sync with a story that unfolds at a moment when Edwardian mores are dying, and whose central characters are leaping into the new age. Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter, 7 Sep. 2022 The show mocked the region’s politicians and mores, a more mainstream and less edgy version of Saturday Night Live. Rachel Donadio, Vogue, 26 July 2022 Sinema and her allies have attempted to depict her decision to be an independent as some kind of shrewd reflection of contemporary mores. Alex Shephard, The New Republic, 24 Jan. 2023 Undoubtedly, this industry is not favored under current mores and other standards dictated by the environmental and social justice movements. Daniel Markind, Forbes, 24 Jan. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'mores.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin, plural of mor-, mos custom

First Known Use

1898, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of mores was in 1898

Cite this Entry

“Mores.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 May. 2023.

Kids Definition


noun plural
mo·​res ˈmȯ(ə)r-ˌāz How to pronounce mores (audio)
 also  -ēz
: the unchanging customs of a particular group that are accepted by all group members as moral and necessary for the group's survival
: usual behavior : habits, manners

More from Merriam-Webster on mores

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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