\ ˈpir How to pronounce peer (audio) \

Definition of peer

 (Entry 1 of 3)

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
2a : 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


verb (1)
peered; peering; peers

Definition of peer (Entry 2 of 3)

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 peered— Francis Kingdon-Ward


verb (2)
peered; peering; peers

Definition of peer (Entry 3 of 3)

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from peer


peer adjective

Synonyms for peer

Synonyms: Noun

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

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 Fellow artists will vote on their favorite peer in the show and offer comment. Linda Gandee, cleveland, "Creative Space Avon bringing back art to the community," 29 Mar. 2021 Prada’s shares have traditionally been more expensive than its British peer’s, but the premium has skyrocketed in recent months. Carol Ryan, WSJ, "Investor FOMO Is Selective for Luxury Brands," 20 Jan. 2021 Things will start to feel extremely balanced within your peer, work, and social groups when everyone is being real about what is going on. Tarot Astrologers,, "Daily horoscope for December 27, 2020," 27 Dec. 2020 Like her nearest peer in the industry — Ryan Murphy — Rhimes is the ideal creator for Netflix, which seems willing to indulge just about any creator impulse, at just about any length, budget and breadth. Washington Post, "In ‘Bridgerton,’ Shonda Rhimes stakes a sumptuous, provocative claim on Netflix — and the traditional period drama," 23 Dec. 2020 Students paid tribute to their peer and expressed disgust toward the shooters. Clint Smith, The Atlantic, "Teaching Should Be Political," 11 Nov. 2020 Lord Fowler, lord speaker of the House of Lords, demanded that his peer apologize. NBC News, "British politician slammed after calling Kamala Harris 'the Indian'," 9 Nov. 2020 In terms of fit and finish, its only peer in this group is the Weatherby. John B. Snow, Outdoor Life, "We Tested the Best-Selling Affordable Deer Rifles, Scopes, and Ammo. Here Are Our Top Picks," 6 Nov. 2020 When president Donald Trump tweeted a broadside at Wallace over the noose, Johnson was one of the few drivers to defend his peer with a social-media post extending his support to NASCAR’s only Black driver at the elite level. Jenna Fryer,, "NASCAR’s Jimmie Johnson leaves lasting charitable mark," 2 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Crowds peer out windows and balconies to catch a glimpse of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Bonn, Germany, May 1965. Time, "The Queen’s Man: Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Dies," 9 Apr. 2021 Hang out at a brewery, catch some live entertainment or peer out at the Houston skyline from a restaurant rooftop. Kevin Davis, Chron, "Houston's most walkable strips for your spring adventures," 8 Apr. 2021 Sometimes Nyiramilimo would venture down the corridor and peer out a window that overlooked the parking lot and the road beyond. New York Times, "He Was the Hero of ‘Hotel Rwanda.’ Now He’s Accused of Terrorism.," 2 Mar. 2021 For the next 71 hours, Young and fellow astronaut Charles Duke used Dr. Carruthers’s telescope to peer deep into space, capturing more than 200 images of the earth’s atmosphere, hundreds of stars and distant galaxies. Washington Post, "George R. Carruthers, scientist who designed telescope that went to the moon, dies at 81," 31 Dec. 2020 The task here is not so much to peer into our souls as to reduce the enormous democratic deficits under which the country labors, most notably an electoral landscape in which farmland tilts to power while city blocks are flattened. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, "What We Get Wrong About America’s Crisis of Democracy," 27 Dec. 2020 Being elevated, the sight can peer over trees and ridges, spotting enemy targets, while the helicopter itself remains hidden from view. Sheldon M. Gallager, Popular Mechanics, "PM Meets the AH-64 Apache: The Helo That Fights Back," 25 Mar. 2021 In the meantime, those interested (and who are able to peer behind the Daily Telegraph’s paywall) should read Ambrose Evans-Pritchard’s latest article. Andrew Stuttaford, National Review, "Treasurys Tremble," 13 Mar. 2021 Slated to launch later this year, JWST will peer more deeply into the universe than any optical or infrared telescope before it, promising to show us a vision of galaxies in their infancy and probe potentially habitable worlds. Sarah Tuttle, Scientific American, "NASA Needs to Rename the James Webb Space Telescope," 1 Mar. 2021

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

See More

First Known Use of peer


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

History and Etymology for peer

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about peer

Time Traveler for peer

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Statistics for peer

Last Updated

12 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Peer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for peer



English Language Learners Definition of peer

: a person who belongs to the same age group or social group as someone else
: a member of the British nobility


\ ˈpir How to pronounce peer (audio) \
peered; peering

Kids Definition of peer

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to look curiously or carefully
2 : to come slightly into view : peep out



Kids Definition of peer (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a person of the same rank or kind : equal
2 : a member of one of the five ranks (duke, marquis, earl, viscount, and baron) of the British nobility

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on peer

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for peer

Nglish: Translation of peer for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of peer for Arabic Speakers

Comments on peer

What made you want to look up peer? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Name that Thing: Flower Edition

Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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