nerd

play
noun \ ˈnərd \

Definition of nerd

:an unstylish, unattractive, or socially inept person; especially :one slavishly devoted to intellectual or academic pursuits
  • computer nerds
  • … single-minded math and science nerds
  • —Anna Quindlen

nerdiness

play \ˈnər-dē-nəs\ noun

nerdish

play \ˈnər-dish\ adjective

nerdy

play \ˈnər-dē\ adjective

Examples of nerd in a Sentence

  1. He dresses like a nerd.

  2. was such a nerd in college that she spent Saturday nights at the library

Recent Examples of nerd from the Web

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

Of nerds, geeks, and dorks

Dork, when used to refer to a socially awkward or inept person, is a relatively recent word: our records indicate that it first appeared in writing in the 1960s. Two of its synonyms in this sense are likewise of fairly recent vintage. Nerd (typically used of a studious species of dork) dates from the 1950s; it was coined by Dr. Seuss in his 1950 book If I Ran the Zoo, although not in the sense that we use today. Geek became synonymous with nerd in the 1950s. Prior to this, the word referred to, among other things, a carnival performer who would bite the head off a live chicken, or other small animal, as part of an act.

Origin and Etymology of nerd

perhaps from nerd, a creature in the children's book If I Ran the Zoo (1950) by Dr. Seuss (Theodor Geisel)

nerd Synonyms


NERD Defined for English Language Learners

nerd

play
noun

Definition of nerd for English Language Learners

  • : a person who behaves awkwardly around other people and usually has unstylish clothes, hair, etc.

  • : a person who is very interested in technical subjects, computers, etc.


NERD Defined for Kids

nerd

play
noun \ ˈnərd \

Definition of nerd for Students

1 :a person who is socially awkward, unattractive, or not fashionable
2 :a person who is extremely interested in technical or intellectual subjects

nerdy

\ˈnər-dē\ adjective


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