\ˈprīd \

Definition of pride 

(Entry 1 of 3)

1 : the quality or state of being proud: such as

a : inordinate self-esteem : conceit

b : a reasonable or justifiable self-respect

c : delight or elation arising from some act, possession, or relationship parental pride

2 : proud or disdainful behavior or treatment : disdain

3a : ostentatious display

b : highest pitch : prime

4 : a source of pride : the best in a group or class

5 : a company of lions

6 : a showy or impressive group a pride of dancers


prided; priding

Definition of pride (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to indulge (oneself) in pride now usually used in the phrase pride oneself on to describe taking pride in some ability, quality, etc. She was a girl who prided herself on her carefully blasé and supercilious attitude towards life.— P. G. Wodehouse


biographical name
\ˈprīd \

Definition of Pride (Entry 3 of 3)

Thomas died 1658 English Parliamentarian commander

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Vanity vs. Pride

People often turn to the dictionary in search of the minute and subtle differences between two similar words. The closely related duo of vanity and pride, which overlap significantly in some respects yet differ in others, offer one such example. Putting aside such uses as pride referring to “a company of lions” and vanity meaning “a dressing table,” each of these words may refer to a state of excessive self-esteem. However, pride may also signify a feeling of satisfaction or happiness (either in oneself or on behalf of others) based on something that is well done; vanity is unlikely to be used in this manner. For a well-worded explanation of this distinction, we might look to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, in which the character Mary opines: “Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.”

Examples of pride in a Sentence


Being able to work again gave him his pride back. Getting caught cheating stripped him of his pride. Pride would not allow her to give up. It's a matter of pride that he does the work all by himself. The novel is about a family consumed with pride and vanity. They needed help, but their pride wouldn't let them ask for it. I had to swallow my pride and admit I made a mistake. He showed a great pride in his family. These young people are the pride of their community.


he prides himself on the quality of his writing
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Was that out of pride, fear of embarrassment or what? John Jurgensen, WSJ, "Jeff Tweedy on Building a Lasting Career While Avoiding the Nostalgia-Act Trap," 6 Nov. 2018 The Bosnian government was thrilled with the boost in tourism and national pride, both welcome after the devastating Bosnian war of 1992-95. Jonathon Keats, Discover Magazine, "Revisiting The Bosnian Pyramid Scheme," 17 Aug. 2018 Brod means pride in Gaelic, and Sioda means silk. Can’t get enough of PEOPLE’s Royals coverage? Maura Hohman,, "Harry Was Right! The Queen’s Corgis Aren’t the Only Dogs Who’ve Fallen in Love with Meghan Markle," 11 July 2018 The tattoo was of Maguire’s face smack dab on Benton’s chest as a beacon of British pride, true soccer fandom, and a sign that Benton keeps his promises. Melissa Locker, Time, "World Cup Player Loves That This Fan Got a Tattoo of His Face After Viral Promise," 10 July 2018 To those who support the national team, the make-up of the team is either a source of pride, or a non-issue. Martin Rogers, USA TODAY, "Why the World Cup is a great advertisement for immigration," 10 July 2018 With the death of Spain’s dictator Francisco Franco in 1975, Occitan speakers began to feel pride, rather than shame, in their language that the government had actively repressed for decades. Adam Cohen, Smithsonian, "This Musician’s Songs Give Powerful Voice to a Language in Crisis," 3 July 2018 To Albanians, the eagle denotes pride, heroism, strength and, ultimately, their ability as a people to survive historical calamities — of which there have been many. Ani Kokobobo, Washington Post, "For Albanians, it’s not just an eagle. Here’s the deeper story those World Cup fines.," 2 July 2018 Take some pride in that, because not everyone can do that at your age. Heather Havrilesky, The Cut, "‘I’m Having a Hard Time Making Friends at My Fancy University’," 27 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

As a Tesla board member, Ms. Denholm has provided some rare automotive experience to a company that prides itself on being an industry outsider. Robb M. Stewart, WSJ, "Meet Tesla’s New Chairman, Who Has to Oversee Elon Musk," 8 Nov. 2018 And its auto execs, from a country that prides itself on its fast trains, reliable transit, and safe streets, should be ashamed for trying to sell our country on an idea of more highways, more driving, and more cars. Alissa Walker, Curbed, "Autonomous sleeping cabins are the dystopian future we must stop," 7 Sep. 2018 While Google has always prided itself on an open and freewheeling corporate culture, activism is newer to other big tech employers. Joseph Menn, The Christian Science Monitor, "Silicon Valley employees increasingly push companies on ethics," 13 July 2018 Mr Agarwal, once a scrap merchant who built the company over four decades, has prided himself on understanding India better than foreign interlopers trying to make a quick rupee. The Economist, "Shootings in India tarnish Vedanta’s reputation," 31 May 2018 Roving Radish prides itself on sourcing the vast majority of its ingredients from Howard County farmers. Kate Magill, Columbia Flier, "'The food's fresher' is the refrain as Howard's farm markets open," 10 May 2018 Apple long has prided itself on packaging clever software with gorgeous hardware. Adam Lashinsky, Fortune, "Xerox Chief Out, Snap Tumble, Trump's Health: CEO Daily for May 2, 2018," 2 May 2018 The United States has long prided itself on a vibrant free speech tradition. Alexander Hertel-fernandez, Vox, "Employers are increasingly using their workers as lobbyists. Here’s why that’s a problem.," 29 Mar. 2018 The sport has prided itself on its efforts toward gender equality since the trailblazing days of Billie Jean King. Chris Chase, For The Win, "Serena Williams is exposing the WTA's shameful lack of maternity leave policy," 22 Mar. 2018

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


13th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for pride


Middle English, from Old English prȳde, from prūd proud — more at proud

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Learn More about pride

Dictionary Entries near pride

prick up





pride and joy


Statistics for pride

Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pride

The first known use of pride was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for pride



English Language Learners Definition of pride

: a feeling that you respect yourself and deserve to be respected by other people

: a feeling that you are more important or better than other people

: a feeling of happiness that you get when you or someone you know does something good, difficult, etc.


\ˈprīd \

Kids Definition of pride

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a reasonable and justifiable feeling of being worthwhile : self-respect

2 : a feeling of being better than others

3 : a sense of pleasure that comes from some act or possession Parents take pride in their children's progress.

4 : someone or something that makes someone proud That car is my pride and joy.


prided; priding

Kids Definition of pride (Entry 2 of 2)

: to feel self-esteem I pride myself on my accurate spelling.

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Comments on pride

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


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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