people

noun
peo·​ple | \ ˈpē-pəl How to pronounce people (audio) \
plural people

Definition of people

 (Entry 1 of 2)
1 plural : human beings making up a group or assembly or linked by a common interest
2 plural : human beings, persons often used in compounds instead of persons salespeople often used attributively people skills
3 plural : the members of a family or kinship
4 plural : the mass of a community as distinguished from a special class disputes between the people and the nobles often used by Communists to distinguish Communists from other people
5 plural peoples : a body of persons that are united by a common culture, tradition, or sense of kinship, that typically have common language, institutions, and beliefs, and that often constitute a politically organized group
6 : lower animals usually of a specified kind or situation
7 : the body of enfranchised citizens of a state

people

verb
peopled; peopling\ ˈpē-​p(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce people (audio) \
Definition of people (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to supply or fill with people
2 : to dwell in : inhabit

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Other Words from people

Noun

peopleless \ ˈpē-​pə(l)-​ləs How to pronounce people (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for people

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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Examples of people in a Sentence

Noun People can be really cruel sometimes. People think the coach should be fired. She tends to annoy people. People say it's impossible, but I'm still going to try. a book for young people a people who migrated across the Bering Strait the native peoples of Mexico Verb a science-fiction novel about a mission to people Mars
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Democrats reject that, citing the 10 million jobs the economy has lost during the pandemic and numerous people still struggling to buy food and pay rent. Alan Fram, ajc, "Dem split on jobless benefits slows relief bill in Senate," 6 Mar. 2021 This should put to rest potential concerns that people would require a Covid-19 vaccine every year like a flu shot. Trefis Team, Forbes, "Why Moderna Stock Is Down 25% Over The Last Month," 5 Mar. 2021 The question at the heart of the movie is whether people at odds can ever learn to trust one another, let alone lay down their lives for one another, and submit to the realization that their fates are ultimately entwined. Tribune News Service, cleveland, "‘Raya and the Last Dragon’ is a moving adventure (review)," 5 Mar. 2021 More than anything, Flowers wants to warn voters of the threat posed by people like his opponent. Jacob Silverman, The New Republic, "The NatSec Bros Who Want to Save Congress From QAnon," 5 Mar. 2021 The Biden administration had previously pledged to have enough vaccines to inculcate most adults — roughly 300 million people — by late summer. Nicholas Florko, STAT, "Biden promises enough Covid-19 vaccines to inoculate all adult Americans by the end of May," 5 Mar. 2021 Democrats reject that, citing the 10 million jobs the economy has lost during the pandemic and numerous people still struggling to buy food and pay rent. Alan Fram, BostonGlobe.com, "Last-ditch effort to hike minimum wage to $15 an hour appears to fail in Senate," 5 Mar. 2021 The Carter Family worked so that people could relax. Krista Stevens, Longreads, "Why Mother Maybelle Carter’s Work Was Never Done," 5 Mar. 2021 From a young age, most people are brought up on eating cereal. Chris Hachey, BGR, "Best Cereal Bowls with Straws," 5 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Protests have mostly been peopled by the young, those on college campuses and those who can take a day off to vent without bearing much consequence. Sarah Haselhorst, Cincinnati.com, "The faces of protesters are mostly millennials: Who are they and what do they think?," 2 June 2020 In Maricopa County, 196 peopled are thought to have died from heat exposure last summer, up from 182 the year before. Los Angeles Times, "Coronavirus could worsen death toll of summer heat waves, health officials warn," 5 May 2020 The upper part of the valley is well peopled, and many of the hills are cultivated high up. Scientific American, "Elephants Appear as Far as the Eye Can See," 20 Apr. 2020 Inside, the small, low-ceilinged rooms are peopled with pilgrims. Roxana Robinson, The New Yorker, "Holding Virginia Woolf in Your Hands," 29 Jan. 2020 Most of the floors had at least a few offices with the lights on, at least some of them peopled with executives trying to figure out what to do now. Greg Jefferson, ExpressNews.com, "Jefferson: Empty sidewalks, eerie silence on San Antonio’s River Walk amid coronavirus outbreak," 20 Mar. 2020 Both writers invented a place and, in novel after novel, peopled it with the same characters. Edmund White, Harper's magazine, "Existential Noir," 6 Jan. 2020 The cybersecurity company partnered with Harris Poll to interview more than 2,000 peopled about their sentiments and tendencies surrounding digital spying. Dalvin Brown, USA TODAY, "Americans create fake social media accounts to cyberstalk spouses and exes, survey says," 12 Feb. 2020 Its universe is one peopled almost entirely with white men looking to out-alpha male one another — a fantasy of the 1960s and not a reflection of the actual era. Barbara Vandenburgh, azcentral, "‘Ford v Ferrari’ is a well-oiled entertainment machine," 13 Nov. 2019

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

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First Known Use of people

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for people

Noun

Middle English peple, from Anglo-French pople, peple, peuple, from Latin populus

Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French popler, poeplier, from pople

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Learn More about people

Time Traveler for people Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for people

Last Updated

7 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“People.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/people. Accessed 8 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for people

people

noun

English Language Learners Definition of people

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: individual human beings
: human beings as a group : all or most people
: a group of people who share a quality, interest, etc.

people

verb

English Language Learners Definition of people (Entry 2 of 2)

formal
of people : to live or be in (a place)
: to put people in (something, such as a story)

people

noun
peo·​ple | \ ˈpē-pəl How to pronounce people (audio) \
plural people or peoples

Kids Definition of people

 (Entry 1 of 2)
1 : all persons considered together “Love makes people act crazy.”— Pam Zollman, Don't Bug Me!
2 : a group of human beings who have something in common young people the people of Montana
Hint: The word people is often used in compounds instead of persons. salespeople
3 : a body of persons making up a race, tribe, or nation the peoples of Asia

people

verb
peopled; peopling
Kids Definition of people (Entry 2 of 2)
1 : to fill with human beings or a certain type of human beings … her little world was peopled with imaginary friends …— Louisa May Alcott, Little Women
2 : to dwell on or in Farmers people this part of the state.

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Comments on people

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