per·​son | \ ˈpər-sᵊn How to pronounce person (audio) \

Definition of person

1 : human, individual sometimes used in combination especially by those who prefer to avoid man in compounds applicable to both sexeschairpersonspokesperson
2 : a character or part in or as if in a play : guise
3a : one of the three modes of being in the Trinitarian Godhead as understood by Christians
b : the unitary personality of Christ that unites the divine and human natures
4a archaic : bodily appearance
b : the body of a human being also : the body and clothing unlawful search of the person
5 : the personality of a human being : self
6 : one (such as a human being, a partnership, or a corporation) that is recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties
7 : reference of a segment of discourse to the speaker, to one spoken to, or to one spoken of as indicated by means of certain pronouns or in many languages by verb inflection
in person
: in one's bodily presence the movie star appeared in person

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Other Words from person

personhood \ ˈpər-​sᵊn-​ˌhu̇d How to pronounce personhood (audio) \ noun

Examples of person in a Sentence

She is a very nice person. I saw a person standing on the dock. Any person who wants a refund must have a receipt. Most people here are quite friendly. The tickets are $25 per person. The person at the front desk will be able to help you. The tax break is only applicable to persons in a high income bracket. I like her as a person, but she is not a very good writer. The disease is easily transmitted from person to person. The dogs discovered that the men were hiding drugs about their persons.
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Recent Examples on the Web The former mayor is worth more than $64 billion and is the eighth richest person in the U.S., according to Forbes. Madeleine Carlisle, Time, "6 Democratic Candidates Take the Nevada Debate Stage Tonight at a Crucial Moment in the 2020 Primary Cycle. Follow Along Live," 20 Feb. 2020 Just a good person, very knowledgeable, high-character guy. cleveland, "Browns LB coach Jason Tarver glad to be reunited with Joe Woods; Ben Bloom back as senior defensive aide," 19 Feb. 2020 In other words, it was imagined that black people and white people were separate species of being and so as a result, a biracial person, like a mule, would not be able to reproduce. Jericka Duncan, CBS News, "Map in widely used U.S. history textbook refers to enslaved Africans as "immigrants," CBS News analysis finds," 19 Feb. 2020 Each dinner is $105 a person, and wine pairings are an additional $50. Carol Deptolla, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Chefs from Chicago, Detroit and Milwaukee will cook at EsterEv for a collaborative series," 17 Feb. 2020 Every person, building and object on Earth radiates heat, but the planet’s blanket-like atmosphere absorbs most of it and radiates it back. Scientific American, "The Supercool Materials That Send Heat to Space," 17 Feb. 2020 Bezos is the richest person in the world, worth an estimated $130 billion according to the Forbes Billionaires List. Elizabeth Weise, USA TODAY, "Amazon's Jeff Bezos launches $10-billion Bezos Earth Fund to fight climate change," 17 Feb. 2020 Another person confined to a motel room asked for and received an instant teapot to heat soup. Carla K. Johnson,, "Home quarantine for travelers buys time as new virus spreads," 16 Feb. 2020 Another amazing person taking from this cruel world. Natasha Reda, Glamour, "Former Love Island Host Caroline Flack Has Died at 40," 15 Feb. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'person.' 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 person

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for person

Middle English, from Anglo-French persone, from Latin persona actor's mask, character in a play, person, probably from Etruscan phersu mask, from Greek prosōpa, plural of prosōpon face, mask — more at prosopopoeia

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Time Traveler for person

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for person

Last Updated

22 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Person.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for person


How to pronounce person (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of person

: a human being
: a person who likes or enjoys something specified
law : the body or clothing of a person especially when considered as a place to hide things


per·​son | \ ˈpər-sᵊn How to pronounce person (audio) \

Kids Definition of person

1 : a human being considered as an individual I had never heard a person speak Arabic.
Hint: The word person is sometimes used in compounds especially to avoid man in words that apply to both sexes. chairperson
2 : the body of a human being Keep your person neat.



Legal Definition of person

2 : the body of a human being also : the body and clothing of a human being had drugs on his person
3 : one (as a human being or corporation) that is recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties — see also juridical person, legal person, personality

Other Words from person

personhood noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on person

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for person

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with person

Spanish Central: Translation of person

Nglish: Translation of person for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of person for Arabic Speakers

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