1 of 2


pot·​ter ˈpä-tər How to pronounce potter (audio)
: one that makes pottery


2 of 2


pottered; pottering; potters
potterer noun
potteringly adverb

Examples of potter in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web
Before long, he was placed in a $55 pine coffin and lowered by inmates into a common grave in the potter’s field on Hart Island. Dan Barry, New York Times, 7 Mar. 2024 Get messy with your sweetie at this intro to throwing on the potter’s wheel workshop for couples. Brittany Delay, The Mercury News, 5 Feb. 2024 Archaeologists examined artifacts at the site to determine three chronological phases of its existence between 50 B.C. and 140 A.D. Among their discoveries, experts identified two water wells and a potter’s kiln built to allow for the circulation of hot gases, officials said. Moira Ritter, Miami Herald, 26 Jan. 2024 Villages also tend to be riddled with caste associations and societal rules on occupations that can keep people locked into jobs as carpenters, barbers, weavers, potters, or sweepers with few other options. Sunny Nagpaul, Fortune, 7 Feb. 2024 In this unorthodox history, Moon, a curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, casts aside the traditional, heroic portrait of the English ceramicist and entrepreneur Josiah Wedgwood and envisions the potter as a symbol of Britain’s post-colonial melancholia. The New Yorker, 5 Feb. 2024 Wilmington: The Cameron Art Museum’s artist-in-residence is renowned potter and sculptor Hiroshi Sueyoshi, a native of Tokyo. Charlotte Observer, 31 Jan. 2024 For the 46-year-old L.A. ceramist, pottery has been an enduring love affair since her first potter’s wheel lesson with teacher John Smolenski at Skaneateles High School in New York. Lisa Boone, Los Angeles Times, 6 Dec. 2023 Artistry was in the Peters’ blood: George was an architect, while Graham grew up to become a graphic designer and Mark a potter. Théoden Janes, Charlotte Observer, 29 Jan. 2024
My first half-hour is spent pottering through tranquil Cotswold villages, trapped behind dawdling tourists but enjoying the Aston Martin’s supple ride and easygoing docility—along with the many approving looks—though feeling ever more like a caged animal. Tim Pitt, Robb Report, 10 May 2023 Can the simple, tactile pleasure of pottering in the dirt or watching seedlings sprout comfort us at a time of loss and bewilderment? New York Times, 17 Apr. 2020 Ammons, who could control the rate of his unrolling tape by slowing down his writing, liked to potter around. Dan Chiasson, The New Yorker, 6 Jan. 2020 Which brings us to Streep’s Mary Louise, a folksy enigma in greige cardigans and ferrety prosthetic teeth, who potters around Monterey making all her rudest inner observations out loud. Sophie Gilbert, The Atlantic, 7 June 2019 As a young journalist, Ms. Lawson often ended up pottering around the kitchen when copy was due, to help focus her thoughts. Eleanore Park, WSJ, 12 Apr. 2018 These theories often involve high-end sports cars, swimming pools or pottering around the expensive parts of the Monopoly board, enjoying fine food and donning overpriced designer clothing. SI.com, 16 Feb. 2018 A place to potter and fix and, dare it be said, a temporary respite from the stresses and strains of modern life. John Sinnott, CNN, 16 May 2017

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

Word History



probably frequentative of English dialect pote to poke

First Known Use


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


1829, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of potter was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near potter

Cite this Entry

“Potter.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/potter. Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 noun
pot·​ter ˈpät-ər How to pronounce potter (audio)
: one that makes pottery


2 of 2 verb
potterer noun

Biographical Definition

Potter 1 of 2

biographical name (1)

Pot·​ter ˈpä-tər How to pronounce Potter (audio)
Beatrix 1866–1943 British writer and illustrator


2 of 2

biographical name (2)

Paul or Paulus 1625–1654 Dutch painter

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