shepherd

noun
shep·​herd | \ ˈshe-pərd How to pronounce shepherd (audio) \

Definition of shepherd

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a person who tends sheep
2 : pastor

shepherd

verb
shepherded; shepherding; shepherds

Definition of shepherd (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to tend as a shepherd
2 : to guide or guard in the manner of a shepherd shepherded the bill through Congress

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for shepherd

Synonyms: Verb

coach, counsel, guide, lead, mentor, pilot, show, tutor

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of shepherd in a Sentence

Verb

She carefully shepherded the children across the street. They shepherded the bill through Congress.

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The chance discovery by Haile-Selassie and an Ethiopian shepherd has created a captivating portrait of 3.8-million-year-old face, providing an unprecedented look at a hominin species from a key stage of human evolution. Brian Handwerk, Smithsonian, "A 3.8-Million-Year-Old Skull Puts a New Face on a Little-Known Human Ancestor," 29 Aug. 2019 In addition to beef, chicken and veggie empanadas, Osorio offers hard-to-find specialties, like Pastel de Papas, a Chilean-style shepherd’s pie. Jessica Yadegaran, The Mercury News, "5 incredible SF Bay Area restaurants from La Cocina kitchen incubator," 24 Aug. 2019 According to legend, which was first recorded in the 13th century, Monserrat’s black madonna, or La Moreneta, was found sometime in the 8th century when shepherds saw a great light, accompanied by singing, coming from the mouth of a cave. Los Angeles Times, "Spain’s ‘Game of Thrones’ sites drew them. Barcelona and towns beyond bewitched them," 24 Aug. 2019 And there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch by night. Maribeth Jones, Country Living, "40 Christmas Bible Verses and Quotes to Celebrate the Reason for the Season," 19 Aug. 2019 Density waves, caused by the motion of shepherd moons within the rings, jostle and reshape the rings. Vahe Peroomian, The Conversation, "A brief astronomical history of Saturn’s amazing rings," 14 Aug. 2019 WASHINGTON - Kylie, the District of Columbia’s fire department’s German shepherd, has returned to work after a nearly fatal incident while helping search for bones along the Potomac River in Northern Virginia. Dana Hedgpeth, chicagotribune.com, "D.C. cadaver dog impaled on the job last month returns to work," 9 Aug. 2019 The town called in shepherd Craig Mason, who along with his border collie Nessie, gathered up the goats by about 9 p.m. local time. Matt Mcnulty, PEOPLE.com, "Hundreds of Goats Run Wild Down Streets of Washington Town After Escaping Enclosure," 2 Aug. 2019 The stamps feature four breeds that commonly serve in the armed forces: German shepherd, Labrador retriever, Belgian Malinois and Dutch shepherd. Lauren M. Johnson, CNN, "Now's your chance to pick up US postage stamps honoring military dogs," 1 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The strut, the salaciousness and the sneaky smile are in full wattage in a production that has been shepherded with great care by director Tony Taccone. Los Angeles Times, "Review: For John Leguizamo, class is back in session. ‘Latin History for Morons’ hits L.A.," 9 Sep. 2019 For another, as Opendoor's example shows, sales with a nontraditional brokerage often begin online or in an app, platforms that can easily shepherd users toward in-house offerings. R.a. Schuetz, Houston Chronicle, "Opendoor moves into title and escrow, RedfinNow to San Antonio," 6 Sep. 2019 As technical experts wound up the latest round of US-Taliban talks in Doha, Qatar, last week, Khalilzad traveled to Germany, which is in charge of shepherding the inter-Afghan negotiations, and to Oslo, where those discussions are likely to be held. Missy Ryan, BostonGlobe.com, "Trump plans Friday meeting to arrange for withdrawal from Afghanistan," 16 Aug. 2019 Williams attends weekly reviews of product and industrial design progress, subsequently briefing Cook for a final signoff, and has been the lead executive shepherding the Apple Watch to market. Bloomberg, The Mercury News, "Apple’s heir apparent is much more like Tim Cook than Steve Jobs," 22 July 2019 For another, as Opendoor's example shows, sales with a nontraditional brokerage often begin online or in an app, platforms that can easily shepherd users toward in-house offerings. R.a. Schuetz, Houston Chronicle, "Opendoor the latest nontraditional brokerage to branch into home loans," 29 Aug. 2019 June and the Marthas form a plan to circumvent the additional security by shepherding the kids to theairport through the dark woods, and soon the kids start arriving. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, "'The Handmaid's Tale' Season 3 finale recap: A gorgeous and completely nonsensical ending," 14 Aug. 2019 There was the bouncer at Ned Peppers who was shot while shepherding terrified people inside. Washington Post, "Devastation on top of devastation: The people of Dayton try to recover, again.," 10 Aug. 2019 The commercial and critical success their work, which Morrison shepherded with her shrewd instincts on the book business, made room for others to continue. NBC News, "Toni Morrison refused to frame her work for a white audience. That was revolutionary.," 7 Aug. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of shepherd

Noun

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

Verb

1790, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for shepherd

Noun

Middle English sheepherde, from Old English scēaphyrde, from scēap sheep + hierde herdsman; akin to Old English heord herd

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about shepherd

Statistics for shepherd

Last Updated

2 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for shepherd

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for shepherd

shepherd

noun

English Language Learners Definition of shepherd

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person whose job is to take care of sheep

shepherd

verb

English Language Learners Definition of shepherd (Entry 2 of 2)

: to guide (someone or something)

shepherd

noun
shep·​herd | \ ˈshe-pərd How to pronounce shepherd (audio) \

Kids Definition of shepherd

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a person who takes care of and guards a flock of sheep

shepherd

verb
shepherded; shepherding

Kids Definition of shepherd (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to take care of and guard a flock of sheep
2 : to gather, lead, or move in the manner of a shepherd She shepherded the children across the playground.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on shepherd

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to make a temporary encampment

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Musical Words Quiz

  • gramophone
  • Which word describes a musical performance marked by the absence of instrumental accompaniment?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!