peer

1 of 3

noun

1
: one that is of equal standing with another : equal
The band mates welcomed the new member as a peer.
especially : one belonging to the same societal group especially based on age, grade, or status
teenagers spending time with their peers
2
a
: a member of one of the five ranks (duke, marquess, earl, viscount, or baron) of the British peerage
b
: noble sense 1
Peers and commoners alike were shown the same courtesy.
3
archaic : companion
peer adjective

peer

2 of 3

verb (1)

peered; peering; peers

intransitive verb

1
: to look narrowly or curiously
a child peering from behind a tree
especially : to look searchingly at something difficult to discern
She peered into the dark closet looking for her missing shoe.
2
: to come slightly into view : emerge partly
a vast white cloud, through which the sun peeredFrancis Kingdon-Ward

peer

3 of 3

verb (2)

peered; peering; peers

Examples of peer in a Sentence

Noun He was respected and admired by his peers. teenagers spending time with their peer groups
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
Worse, many of his peers went on to a life of street crime, skipping school and joining gangs. Tim Chan, The Hollywood Reporter, 22 Sep. 2023 With little support available from a government level, the band has taken it upon themselves to organize tours for their peers, such as the indie rock trio Sobs from Singapore and the Manila garage band Ourselves the Elves. Max Pilley, Spin, 22 Sep. 2023 But that simply can’t happen when the adults in the situation could only feel comfortable when children fear their teachers, their parents, their peers, and worst of all, themselves. Melissa Gomez, Los Angeles Times, 21 Sep. 2023 That system has created an imbalanced industry where superstars are rewarded far beyond the rest of their peers. Steven J. Horowitz, Variety, 21 Sep. 2023 But Kalach, unlike his peers, was more attuned to his homeland’s topography and, with that, our age’s growing sustainability concerns. Suleman Anaya Fabian Martinez, New York Times, 20 Sep. 2023 Virginia Beach high schoolers have spoken at every school board meeting for a year, begging members to protect their LGBTQ peers VIRGINIA BEACH — Emily LaBar arrived at the school board meeting early with a small box of safety pins. Karina Elwood, Washington Post, 20 Sep. 2023 Last year, students performed significantly worse on the English tests than their peers in 2021. Mandy McLaren, BostonGlobe.com, 19 Sep. 2023 What has also been reported is that at least eight of them have cooperated with the prosecution and may be eventually testifying against their peers. Taylor Wilson, USA TODAY, 9 Sep. 2023
Verb
Miss Manners can only hope that your hosts have the good manners not to peer into your soup plate and comment on the contents. Miss Manners | Judith Martin, Anchorage Daily News, 27 Mar. 2023 The policymakers will also try to peer into the future and forecast the likely path of growth, employment, inflation and their own interest rates. Christopher Rugaber, Fortune, 22 Mar. 2023 These indestructible treasures have always been buried in matter, awaiting the invention of scanning electron microscopes and scientists with enough assiduity to spend decades on end peering into their atomic eyes. Virginia Heffernan, WIRED, 21 Mar. 2023 The only way to peer deep into Earth’s interior is to use earthquake waves like a scanner. Stephanie Pappas, Scientific American, 22 Feb. 2023 Webb telescope uses celestial Pandora’s box to see distant galaxies View a detailed image of Pandora’s Cluster, a megacluster of galaxies that allowed astronomers to peer into the distant universe. Alexandra Meeks, CNN, 16 Feb. 2023
Verb
As the group peered through a chain-link fence, a pickup truck sped up the road and blocked the group in. David Gelles, New York Times, 20 Sep. 2023 The $10 billion Webb telescope has peered deeper into space and delivered new observations of faraway galaxies since its launch in December 2021. Ellen Francis, Washington Post, 12 Sep. 2023 In Portland, attracted by the smell of cooking, Ole Bolle peers into the top of a house. Teresa Nowakowski, Smithsonian Magazine, 12 Sep. 2023 The residents who cycle its streets and peer through windows at the foreign media cameras are reluctant to rehash the months-old past. ‘Not a safe haven for war criminals’ The legal principle that allows the Dutch government to pursue Ayham al S. is known as universal jurisdiction. Mick Krever, CNN, 5 Sep. 2023 For a piece that peers into the world of the Wild West, Eilber and Allen wanted to alter the musical landscape to honor its roots. Steven Vargas, Los Angeles Times, 1 Sep. 2023 In 1998, the Lunar Prospector Mission peered into the shadowed places described by the physicist and found more hydrogen there than elsewhere. Matt Hrodey, Discover Magazine, 30 Aug. 2023 Special to Cincinnati Enquirer The James Webb Space Telescope has now spent more than a year peering deep into the cosmos. Dean Regas, The Enquirer, 8 Sep. 2023 Today co-anchor Jenna Bush Hager celebrated the siblings’ first moments together with a trio of snapshots on her Instagram account, showing Mila and Poppy peering into Hal’s bassinet and snuggling up in the hospital bed alongside their mom and the newborn. Kate Hogan, Peoplemag, 27 Aug. 2023 See More

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

Word History

Etymology

Noun and Verb (2)

Middle English, from Anglo-French per, from per, adjective, equal, from Latin par

Verb (1)

perhaps by shortening & alteration from appear

First Known Use

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (1)

1580, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of peer was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near peer

Cite this Entry

“Peer.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/peer. Accessed 4 Oct. 2023.

Kids Definition

peer

1 of 2 noun
1
: a person of the same rank or class as another
2
a
: a member of one of the five ranks of the British nobility

peer

2 of 2 verb
1
: to look closely or curiously
peered into the dark closet
2
Etymology

Noun

Middle English peer "one on equal standing with another," derived from early French per (adjective) "equal," from Latin par "equal" — related to compare, pair, par, umpire see Word History at umpire

Verb

perhaps an altered and shortened form of appear

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