\ ˈsər How to pronounce sir (audio) \

Definition of sir

1a : a man entitled to be addressed as sir used as a title before the given name of a knight or baronet and formerly sometimes before the given name of a priest
b : a man of rank or position
2a used as a usually respectful form of address
b capitalized used as a conventional form of address in the salutation of a letter

Examples of sir in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Well, sir, does Netflix have an astronaut drama for you. Kristen Baldwin,, "Please send Away back into space: Review," 28 Aug. 2020 No, sir, all due respect, the tragic mistakes were made on Jan. 22 and Feb. 23, and on Feb. 27 and March 10, when the president of the United States assured our country that the coronavirus was no big deal. Gregg Doyel, The Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: Football safe for Marion County kids, but not for Big Ten? What are we doing?," 11 Aug. 2020 My romantic sense of the world is strong, yes sir, but it’s no longer tethered to some external source. Heather Havrilesky, The Cut, "‘My Ex Ruined My Whole College Experience!’," 30 Aug. 2017 MANCHIN: To the best of your knowledge, sir, did any of these following individuals meet with Russian officials at any point during the campaign. Tina Nguyen,, "Does Jeff Sessions Have a Memory Problem?," 13 June 2017 But these are not ordinary times, and you, sir, are anything but an ordinary man. Oliver Gettell,, "Carl Reiner urges Anthony Kennedy not to retire from Supreme Court," 7 July 2017 Good day sir-- Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) June 26, 2017 Williams' 23 singles and 14 doubles Grand Slam titles are record-breaking; the nearest male tennis player in Grand Slam wins is Roger Federer, with 18 Slams in singles competition. Cheryl Wray,, "Serena Williams responds to John McEnroe's statement that she'd be 'like No. 700' in men's tennis," 26 June 2017 Good day sir— Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) June 26, 2017 While McEnroe did praise Serena, the qualifier of the compliment along with a pointless hypothetical scenario appeared to grab Williams' attention. Andrew Joseph, USA TODAY, "Serena Williams hits back at John McEnroe," 26 June 2017 Senator King, as always sir, thank you for coming on and sharing your views. NBC News, "Meet the Press - June 18, 2017," 18 June 2017

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for sir

Middle English, from sire

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Time Traveler for sir

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

2 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Sir.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for sir


How to pronounce sir (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sir

used without a name as a form of polite address to a man of rank or authority (such as a military or police officer, teacher, or master)
used without a name as a form of address at the beginning of a formal letter
used as a title before the name of a knight or baronet


\ ˈsər How to pronounce sir (audio) \

Kids Definition of sir

1 used without a name as a form of polite address to a manMay I help you, sir?
2 capitalized used as a title before the given name of a knight or a baronetSir Walter Raleigh
3 capitalized used without a name as a form of address at the beginning of a letter

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More from Merriam-Webster on sir

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sir

Nglish: Translation of sir for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sir for Arabic Speakers

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