1 of 3


neigh·​bor ˈnā-bər How to pronounce neighbor (audio)
: one living or located near another
had lunch with her next-door neighbor
: fellow man
thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyselfMatthew 19:19 (King James Version)


2 of 3


: being immediately adjoining or relatively near


3 of 3


neighbored; neighboring ˈnā-b(ə-)riŋ How to pronounce neighbor (audio)

transitive verb

: to adjoin immediately or lie relatively near to

intransitive verb

: to live or be located as a neighbor
: to associate in a neighborly way

Examples of neighbor in a Sentence

Noun We invited our friends and neighbors. Canada is a neighbor of the U.S. Venus is Earth's nearest neighbor. Verb the baseball field neighbors a parking lot
Recent Examples on the Web
The love and support of neighbors helped sustain Perkins and Cody at the darkest moment of their lives, especially when community leaders fell short, Cody says. Will Lanzoni, CNN Money, 23 Sep. 2023 China has rejected the accusation, setting up another public disagreement with its neighbor over the flashpoint waterway. Kathleen Magramo, CNN, 22 Sep. 2023 Poland’s prime minister said this week that his country would no longer send arms to its neighbor, amid a spiraling trade dispute and ahead of national elections. Julie Tsirkin, NBC News, 22 Sep. 2023 Closer to home, Kyiv’s search for markets for its agricultural products led to tensions with its neighbors this week, following the expiration of an agreement with the European Union limiting Ukrainian imports. David L. Stern, Washington Post, 22 Sep. 2023 In the film, helmed by Andrew Haigh, Scott stars as Adam, a man in contemporary London who has a chance encounter with a mysterious neighbor, Mescal’s Harry, one night near his tower block. Abbey White, The Hollywood Reporter, 21 Sep. 2023 Ukraine and its allies cast the country's cause as a battle for the rule of international law, for the sovereignty of every country with a powerful and potentially expansionist neighbor and for the stability of global food and energy supplies. Compiled By Democrat-Gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 20 Sep. 2023 Out in in the middle of nowhere, there are no neighbors on the next block to complain about piles of trash or human waste, and demand that government take action. Erika D. Smith, Los Angeles Times, 20 Sep. 2023 Our 62-year-old neighbor Fernando came knocking on our window minutes after closing looking for the everything-must-go discount. Darnell Mayberry | , cleveland, 9 Sep. 2023
Some non-neighbor friends are appalled. Amy Dickinson, Chicago Tribune, 17 Nov. 2022
London Metropolitan Police’s first female commissioner resigns amid scandals Armed officers from neighboring police forces have been asked to support the Metropolitan Police, according to the service’s statement. Kyle Melnick, Washington Post, 25 Sep. 2023 Allocate an afternoon to explore the complex and the neighboring Britomart district, where New Zealand’s most renowned designers, including Karen Walker, Kate Sylvester, Juliette Hogan, and Zambesi, can be found. Amy Louise Bailey, Travel + Leisure, 25 Sep. 2023 Its language and culture more closely resemble those found in neighboring Tibet. Jen Murphy, Robb Report, 23 Sep. 2023 The finding follows similar news regarding neighboring planet TRAPPIST-1 B, another planet in the TRAPPIST-1 system. Elise Cutts, Smithsonian Magazine, 22 Sep. 2023 The strike highlighted one of the lingering enigmas of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s brutal invasion of Ukraine: Moscow has been waging war not only on a neighboring population but also on one that, like its own, is overwhelmingly made up of Orthodox Christians. Andrei Soldatov, Foreign Affairs, 14 Sep. 2023 Adkins began calling clinics in neighboring states. Nadine El-Bawab, ABC News, 12 Sep. 2023 In September 2021, the Cumbre Vieja volcano erupted on the neighboring island of La Palma, spewing ash and lava for nearly three months, displacing thousands, and causing over €840 million ($899 million) in damage. Colette Davidson, The Christian Science Monitor, 8 Sep. 2023 The woman grabbed her phone and texted her neighboring family members, including her 23-year-old brother who rushed to her home to protect her. Emma Colton, Fox News, 11 Sep. 2023 See More

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

Word History


Noun, Adjective, and Verb

Middle English, from Old English nēahgebūr (akin to Old High German nāhgibūr); akin to Old English nēah near and Old English gebūr dweller — more at nigh, boor

First Known Use


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1530, in the meaning defined above


circa 1586, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of neighbor was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near neighbor

Cite this Entry

“Neighbor.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Oct. 2023.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 noun
neigh·​bor ˈnā-bər How to pronounce neighbor (audio)
: a person who lives near another
: a person or thing located near another
Canada is a neighbor of the U.S.
: a fellow human being


2 of 2 verb
neighbored; neighboring
: to be next to or near to
neighboring towns


Old English nēahgebūr "neighbor," from nēah "near" + gebūr "dweller" — related to near, nigh

Word Origin
The words near and nigh are both related to—and have the same meaning as—the Old English word nēah. Another word which can be traced, at least in part, to nēah is neighbor. The combination of nēah, meaning "near," and gebūr, meaning "dweller," produced the Old English word nēahgebūr. This word was used for "a person living near another." The pronunciation and spelling of nēahgebūr has changed over the centuries to give us neighbor, but the word's basic meaning has remained the same.

More from Merriam-Webster on neighbor

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