1 of 2


ˈnü How to pronounce new (audio)
chiefly British
ˈnyü How to pronounce new (audio)
 in place names usually  (ˌ)nu̇,
 or  ,
 or  (ˌ)ni
: having recently come into existence : recent, modern
I saw their new baby for the first time.
: having been seen, used, or known for a short time : novel
rice was a new crop for the area
: unfamiliar
visit new places
: being other than the former or old
a steady flow of new money
He bought a new car.
: having been in a relationship or condition but a short time
new to the job
a new wife
: beginning as the resumption or repetition of a previous act or thing
a new day
the new edition
: made or become fresh
awoke a new person
: relating to or being a new moon
: different from one of the same category that has existed previously
new realism
: of dissimilar origin and usually of superior quality
a new strain of hybrid corn
capitalized : modern sense 3
especially : having been in use after medieval times
New Greek
ˈnü-ish How to pronounce new (audio)
newness noun


2 of 2


: newly, recently
usually used in combination
Choose the Right Synonym for new

new, novel, original, fresh mean having recently come into existence or use.

new may apply to what is freshly made and unused

new brick

or has not been known before

new designs

or not experienced before.

starts the new job

novel applies to what is not only new but strange or unprecedented.

a novel approach to the problem

original applies to what is the first of its kind to exist.

a man without one original idea

fresh applies to what has not lost its qualities of newness such as liveliness, energy, brightness.

a fresh start

Examples of new in a Sentence

Adjective They visited the new library. I saw their new baby for the first time. They planted new trees on the campus. a new kind of music She couldn't afford a new car, so she bought a used one. He bought the car new. She is eager to see his new apartment. This is my new stepsister. the young man and his new wife I made a new friend today. Adverb new-mown grass
Recent Examples on the Web
Central to the group’s Africa strategy is the creation of a new financing vehicle, the Logical African Stories fund, which will focus on investment in content, production and distribution companies, and physical facilities, as well as packaging and fundraising for third-party projects. Christopher Vourlias, Variety, 17 May 2024 Between fulfilling the obligations of dropping a new project and a new memoir, the iconic MC found time for an early-evening Zoom session. Andre Gee, Rolling Stone, 17 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for new 

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

Word History



Middle English newe, new, nywe, going back to Old English nīowe, nīewe, nēowe, going back to Germanic *neuja- (whence Old Saxon & Old High German niuwi "new," Middle Dutch nieuwe, nûwe, Old Norse nýr, Gothic niujis), going back to Indo-European *neu̯i̯o-, derivative of *neu̯o- "new, young," whence Latin novus "new" (from *newos), Greek néos "young, fresh, new," Tocharian A ñu "new," Tocharian B ñuwe, Sanskrit návaḥ "new, fresh, young," Avestan nauua-, Hittite nēwa- "new"; also, going back to presumed ablaut variant, *nou̯o- (whence Old Church Slavic novŭ "new, recent") and *nou̯i̯o- (whence Old Irish náue, nuae "new, fresh," Welsh newydd, Lithuanian naũjas "new," Sanskrit návyaḥ "new, young"); also, going back to a derivative *neu̯ǝro- (parallel to Greek nearós "youthful, tender"), Armenian nor "new"

Note: A widely attested Indo-European adjective, apparently extant in all major branches except Albanian. Indo-European *neu̯o-, etc., may be based on *nu, *nuH "now" (see now entry 1).


Middle English newe, going back to Old English nīwe, derivative of nīowe, nīewe new entry 1

First Known Use


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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

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

Dictionary Entries Near new

Cite this Entry

“New.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 adjective
: not old : recent, modern
new ways of thinking
: not the same as the former : taking the place of one that came before
a new teacher
: recently discovered or learned about
new lands
new plants and animals
: not known or experienced before
new feelings
: not accustomed
new to this work
: beginning as a repeating of some previous act or thing
the new year
: refreshed in spirits or vigor
felt like a new person after my vacation
: being in a position or place for the first time
a new member
newness noun


2 of 2 adverb
: just recently
new-mown hay

Geographical Definition


geographical name

ˈnü How to pronounce New (audio)
river flowing 320 miles (515 kilometers) from northwestern North Carolina north across Virginia into West Virginia, where it joins the Gauley River to form the Kanawha River

More from Merriam-Webster on new

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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