people

1 of 2

noun

peo·​ple ˈpē-pəl How to pronounce people (audio)
plural people
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
peopleless adjective

people

2 of 2

verb

peopled; peopling ˈpē-p(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce people (audio)

transitive verb

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

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
Recent Examples on the Web
Noun
President Joe Biden is unveiling new actions Tuesday that will speed a pathway to legal residency for about 500,000 undocumented people living in the United States. Christian Datoc, Washington Examiner - Political News and Conservative Analysis About Congress, the President, and the Federal Government, 18 June 2024 Summer heat Around 270 million people in the US could see temperatures at or above 90 degrees this week as an intense heat wave ushers in the official start of summer on Thursday. Alexandra Banner, CNN, 18 June 2024
Verb
Capote has peopled his story with real persons, using their real names as well as with a number of other real persons, using fake names. Liz Smith, Vulture, 31 Jan. 2024 But unlike Michelangelo, who was known for his muscular figures, Mr. Butcher peopled his chapel with his signature sprites. Penelope Green, New York Times, 1 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for people 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'people.' 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

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

Verb

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

First Known Use

Noun

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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

Dictionary Entries Near people

Cite this Entry

“People.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/people. Accessed 22 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition

people

1 of 2 noun
peo·​ple ˈpē-pəl How to pronounce people (audio)
plural people
1
plural : human beings, persons
often used in compounds instead of persons
salespeople
2
plural : the members of a family : kindred
3
plural : the mass of a community as distinguished from a special class
4
plural peoples : a body of persons united by a common culture, tradition, or sense of kinship, and usually language
5
: the body of voters of a state

people

2 of 2 verb
peopled; peopling ˈpē-p(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce people (audio)
1
: to supply or fill with people
2

More from Merriam-Webster on people

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