\ ˈnir How to pronounce near (audio) \

Definition of near

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : at, within, or to a short distance or time sunset was drawing near
2 : almost, nearly was near dead
3 : in a close or intimate manner : closely near related
4 archaic : in a frugal manner

Definition of near (Entry 2 of 4)

: close to beaches near the city seemed to be near death

Definition of near (Entry 3 of 4)

1a : not far distant in time, place, or degree in the near future
b : almost happening : narrowly missed or avoided a near win in the primary a near midair collision
c : nearly not happening a near escape
2 : closely related or intimately associated her nearest and dearest friend
3a : being the closer of two the near side
b : being the left-hand one of a pair the near wheel of a cart
4 : direct, short the nearest road
6a : closely resembling the standard or typical a near desert
b : approximating the genuine near silk


neared; nearing; nears

Definition of near (Entry 4 of 4)

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Other Words from near


nearness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for near

Synonyms: Adverb

Synonyms: Preposition

Synonyms: Adjective

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Verb

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Examples of near in a Sentence

Adverb The plant was near dead when I got it. as the campers grew cold, so they gravitated nearer to the campfire Preposition I left the box near the door. The cat won't go near fire. There are several beaches near here. She came home near midnight. We feared he was near death. Adjective The nearest grocery store is three blocks away. The near side headlight is out. Verb As the date of the performance neared, we grew more and more anxious. He always cheers up when baseball season nears. The airplane began to descend as it neared the island. He must be nearing 80 years of age. The negotiators were nearing a decision.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb In neighborhoods just outside our downtown, poverty rates hover near 40%. Patton Dodd, Twin Cities, "Patton Dodd: Cities need housing. Churches have property. Can they work something out?," 7 Nov. 2019 Chilly Canadian air will settle into Connecticut on Friday with partly sunny skies and high temperatures in the upper 30s to near 40 degrees., "Rain to start in mid to late afternoon on Thursday," 6 Nov. 2019 Since the protests restarted on Oct. 25 after a brief hiatus, there have been near-continuous clashes on two bridges leading to the heavily fortified Green Zone, the headquarters of the government and home to several foreign embassies. NBC News, "Iraqi protesters attack Iran consulate in Karbala," 4 Nov. 2019 The Maddox is an apartment complex located west of the Grand Parkway near I-10. Roy Kent, Houston Chronicle, "THIS WEEK: Veterans Day Expo scheduled for Saturday at Katy Mills Mall," 3 Nov. 2019 In August, this very same chicken sandwich brought some corners of the United States to a near-standstill. Natasha Frost, Quartzy, "Americans are waiting hours to eat the Popeyes chicken sandwich," 3 Nov. 2019 The National Weather Service predicts Portland will round out its weekend with a sunny Sunday that tops out near 60 degrees. oregonlive, "Portland metro Sunday weather: Get ready for another perfect fall day," 3 Nov. 2019 Poorer children are still more vulnerable, since their schools tend to be near busy roads. S.d., The Economist, "How air pollution can ruin schoolchildren’s lives," 2 Nov. 2019 The slim crescent moon passes very near to blazing blue-white Venus early this evening during twilight. Arnold Pearlstein,, "The Stars This Week: Oct. 27-Nov. 2," 27 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Preposition Philz Coffee on Santa Monica Boulevard near 6th Street. Scott Roxborough, The Hollywood Reporter, "AFM 2019 According to Producer Fred Bernstein," 8 Nov. 2019 Firefighters rushed to the scene near 15th Street and Mountain Avenue at about 11 a.m. PT. NBC News, "Small plane crashes into house outside of Los Angeles," 7 Nov. 2019 But, somewhere near Main Street, I got stuck on how to reliably create three, five, or six pieces. Dan Rockmore, The New Yorker, "The Myth and Magic of Generating New Ideas," 7 Nov. 2019 Roy Hollingsworth, 35, pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicular assault, driving under the influence and drug possession charges in the March 18 crash on Lorain Road near West 204th Street. Cory Shaffer, cleveland, "Man pleads guilty in Fairview Park crash that caused tow truck driver’s leg amputation," 7 Nov. 2019 For a month after the Labor Day tragedy, her friends and family begged for information from anyone who had been near Old Man's Cave that day, a picture-perfect spot for hikers in the park where Schafer had been photographing teens. Author: Katie Mettler, Meagan Flynn, Anchorage Daily News, "Teens are accused of pushing a log off a cliff and killing a woman below. They could be tried for murder.," 7 Nov. 2019 Soon after, officers found a man suffering from a gunshot wound, who later died, in a yard near Northview Street about a block away from the first shooting incident, WKMG reported. Joe Mario Pedersen,, "Three men shot to death in Palm Bay: report," 6 Nov. 2019 The incident happened at 4:37 p.m. Tuesday near Southwest 10th Street and 8th Avenue, police said. Larry Barszewski,, "Woman suspected in hit and run turns herself in," 6 Nov. 2019 Phoenix police arrested a naked man wearing a handcuff after he was found inside a woman's home near West Van Buren Street and North 10th Avenue on Oct. 29, according to court records. Ayano Nagaishi, azcentral, "Naked man wearing novelty handcuff arrested on suspicion of trespassing in Phoenix home," 5 Nov. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective To support our economy and ensure that everyone has access to opportunity requires a serious commitment to transformed transportation in the long term, and to the building blocks to help make progress in the near term., "Should the MBTA invest in developing a high frequency rapid transit-type urban rail service?," 11 Nov. 2019 Though waning fears of a no-deal Brexit should help cushion growth in the near-term, the bank said the British economy will grow by around 1% less over the coming three years than it forecast just three months ago. Washington Post, "Bank of England warns over global economic hit to UK," 7 Nov. 2019 It is hoped that reducing that near-term debt will save the company money on interest payments and improve its quarterly returns. Sergio Chapa, Houston Chronicle, "NOV plans to issue $500 million of senior notes amid financial reshuffling," 4 Nov. 2019 After all of the recent snow, though, no significant snowfall appears to be in the near-term forecast. Chris Bianchi, The Denver Post, "Colorado statewide snowpack is at 212% of average," 2 Nov. 2019 Concerns about a breakdown in trade talks, coupled with the potential for a further slowdown in corporate profit growth could pose a threat for stocks in the near term, some analysts cautioned. Jessica Menton, USA TODAY, "Stocks escaped a scary October and set records. So what’s next for your 401(k) in 2019?," 1 Nov. 2019 In the near term, Uber Money could keep its drivers on the road and away from competitors. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "Investors aren’t moved by Uber’s shift into banking," 31 Oct. 2019 But Apple stock rose slightly after the call regardless, indicating that the market at least believes Apple still has plenty of room to grow in services and wearables in the near term before the iPhone's slowing momentum becomes a serious problem. Samuel Axon, Ars Technica, "Apple earnings Q4 2019: Tim Cook says health will be what Apple is remembered for," 30 Oct. 2019 Under the terms of the deal, the city can avoid near-term property tax increases, said city attorney Rebecca Windt Pearson. Aubrey Wieber, Anchorage Daily News, "Anchorage, Chugach Electric agree to terms on $999 million sale of electric utility," 29 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Through half a season, Trubisky’s inconsistency has made that leap impossible, and in turn, the Bears’ lofty postseason goals are nearing unattainable. Colleen Kane,, "To bench or not to bench? That is the question for the Bears and Mitch Trubisky," 7 Nov. 2019 The rain didn’t help but the ESPN College GameDay setup was nearing completion Thursday afternoon on the Alabama campus. Michael Casagrande |, al, "First look at new ESPN College GameDay location on Alabama’s quad," 7 Nov. 2019 Plants that produce more than half Eskom’s power are at, or nearing, their ideal retirement age. Washington Post, "Why Eskom’s Power Crisis Is South Africa’s Top Risk," 31 Oct. 2019 Chelsea boss Frank Lampard has confirmed star midfielder N'Golo Kanté is nearing a return following a protracted injury layoff., "Frank Lampard Reveals When N'Golo Kanté Should Return After Manchester United Defeat," 31 Oct. 2019 That means there are a lot of leaders at, or nearing, retirement age. Sarah Todd, Quartz at Work, "Why CEO turnover in 2019 is so damn high," 14 Oct. 2019 As the project neared its final approval stages, members of the carpenters union jammed an Economic Development Authority meeting and objected to Reuter Walton’s use of subcontractors. J.d. Duggan, Twin Cities, "Roseville adds labor standards to subsidies after union criticizes developer’s use of subcontractors," 20 Sep. 2019 And with the pivotal 2020 elections nearing, politicians face more pressure to act on an issue that one poll shows is supported by 68% of Floridians. Skyler Swisher,, "Is Florida ready to pass LGBT civil rights? Major employers, bipartisan coalition pushing anti-discrimination law," 20 Sep. 2019 As voting neared, three key Republican senators whose votes McConnell needed remained undecided, and the GOP leader drew them and other Republicans to his office to decide the next steps. Lisa Mascaro, Fortune, "Why New Brett Kavanaugh Allegation Is Unlikely to Prompt Impeachment," 16 Sep. 2019

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


13th century, in the meaning defined above


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


circa 1522, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for near

Adverb, Preposition, Adjective, and Verb

Middle English ner, partly from ner nearer, from Old English nēar, comparative of nēah nigh; partly from Old Norse nær nearer, comparative of nā- nigh — more at nigh

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More Definitions for near


How to pronounce near (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of near

 (Entry 1 of 4)

: close to someone or something in distance
: not far away in time
: almost or nearly

English Language Learners Definition of near (Entry 2 of 4)

: close to (something or someone)

English Language Learners Definition of near (Entry 3 of 4)

: located a short distance away
: not far away in time
used to refer to the side, end, etc., that is closer



English Language Learners Definition of near (Entry 4 of 4)

: to come closer in space or time to someone or something


\ ˈnir How to pronounce near (audio) \
nearer; nearest

Kids Definition of near

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1 : at, within, or to a short distance or time Don't go any nearer. Night drew near.
2 : almost, nearly The weather was near perfect.

Kids Definition of near (Entry 2 of 4)

: close to We'll take a table near the window.
nearer; nearest

Kids Definition of near (Entry 3 of 4)

1 : closely related or associated a near relative
2 : not far away in distance or time the nearest exit the near future
3 : coming close : narrow a near miss
4 : being the closer of two the near side

Other Words from near

nearness noun


neared; nearing

Kids Definition of near (Entry 4 of 4)

: to come near : approach As they neared the burrow Willie … came galloping toward them …— Robert Lawson, Rabbit Hill

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More from Merriam-Webster on near

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for near

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with near

Spanish Central: Translation of near

Nglish: Translation of near for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of near for Arabic Speakers

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