sail·​or | \ ˈsā-lər How to pronounce sailor (audio) \

Definition of sailor

1a : one that sails especially : mariner
b(1) : a member of a ship's crew
2 : a traveler by water
3 : a stiff straw hat with a low flat crown and straight circular brim

Examples of sailor in a Sentence

He worked as a sailor on a cargo ship. the sailors were glad to be arriving in port after their long voyage
Recent Examples on the Web Meanwhile, the property manager and former U.S. Navy sailor, David Gibbs, tried rescuing the tenant from the front door. Joe Mario Pedersen, Orlando Sentinel, 4 May 2022 Brent Gaut, plans to offer every sailor onboard the option of moving to an off-ship location, according to the Navy. Eleanor Watson, CBS News, 3 May 2022 When asked by a sailor about higher levels of suicide and mental health problems specifically on ships under maintenance, Smith acknowledged the special challenges of serving a ship during an overhaul. Matt Seyler, ABC News, 2 May 2022 In Hawaii, a family let the two borrow their minivan to get around the island, and a sailor offered the teenage boys a place to stay. Ian Dille, Outside Online, 29 Apr. 2022 Petra and Alex Higby met when Mr. Higby, a professional sailor, was in San Francisco for the America’s Cup. Cecilie Rohwedder, WSJ, 27 Apr. 2022 His father, also a Star Ferry sailor, regaled him with stories of the sea as a young boy. New York Times, 19 Apr. 2022 One sailor’s mother said her son, who survived, told her that about 40 people died and many were wounded and missing in the sinking. Arkansas Online, 19 Apr. 2022 That unidentified sailor was taken to Riverside Regional Medical Center in Newport News where the service member was pronounced dead. NBC News, 19 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of sailor

1577, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for sailor

alteration of sailer

Learn More About sailor

Dictionary Entries Near sailor

sail needle



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Statistics for sailor

Last Updated

8 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Sailor.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for sailor


sail·​or | \ ˈsā-lər How to pronounce sailor (audio) \

Kids Definition of sailor

: a person who works on or controls a boat or ship as part of the crew

More from Merriam-Webster on sailor

Nglish: Translation of sailor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sailor for Arabic Speakers


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