social

adjective
so·​cial | \ ˈsō-shəl How to pronounce social (audio) \

Definition of social

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : involving allies or confederates the Social War between the Athenians and their allies
2a : marked by or passed in pleasant companionship with friends or associates an active social life
c : of, relating to, or designed for sociability a social club
3 : of or relating to human society, the interaction of the individual and the group, or the welfare of human beings as members of society social institutions
4a : tending to form cooperative and interdependent relationships with others Infants can become social beings only through interaction with others.— Gerald R. Leslie and Sheila K. Korman
b : living and breeding in more or less organized communities especially for the purposes of cooperation and mutual benefit : not solitary Of the canid family, the wolf is one of the most social species, since it is a pack hunter.— Michael W. Fox The evolutionary theory of kin selection requires that social animals recognize their relatives so that altruistic behavior can be displayed preferentially toward kin.Science — see also social insect
c of a plant : tending to grow in groups or masses so as to form a pure stand
5a : of, relating to, or based on rank or status in a particular society a member of our social set
b : of, relating to, or characteristic of the upper classes
c : formal
6 : being such in social situations a social drinker

social

noun

Definition of social (Entry 2 of 2)

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Examples of social in a Sentence

Adjective She has poor social skills. The vacation resort held a lot of social events. I joined the club to improve my social life. Her sister is much more social than she is. social institutions like marriage and family Health care is a major social issue. Child abuse has become a serious social problem. Martin Luther King, Jr., fought for social change. Most humans are social beings. Noun The club has socials every month. He's living on the social now.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Thomas Talhelm, the founder of SmartAir, a social enterprise that makes simple, inexpensive air cleaners, says that interest has definitely increased this summer. Veronique Greenwood, Wired, "Schools (and Children) Need a Fresh Air Fix," 14 Oct. 2020 Barrett was bipartisan in her refusal to connect the dots from her family to bigger social issues that come with policy proposals attached to them. Washington Post, "Amy Coney Barrett confirmation hearings," 13 Oct. 2020 That sense of uncertainty seemed to dovetail with other political and social anxieties of the moment. Doug Maccash, NOLA.com, "Gorgeous new NOMA show includes translucent silk clouds raining 4,000 glinting needles," 13 Oct. 2020 There can be no definitive answer to these questions, but one thing is clear: The libertarian social experiment underway in Grafton was uniquely incapable of dealing with the problem. Patrick Blanchfield, The New Republic, "The Town That Went Feral," 13 Oct. 2020 Are people moving in really trying to be a part of the social sphere of the existing community? Brooke Bobb, Vogue, "“The Vibe Is About Celebrating Blackness”: Meet the Women Behind Building Black Bed-Stuy," 13 Oct. 2020 Handel's views on social issues are deemed too conservative for the district. David Mark, Washington Examiner, "Will Karen Handel take back the House seat she won in 2017 and lost in 2018?," 11 Oct. 2020 There were social injustice issues for players to wrap their minds around and act on. Mike Anthony, Star Tribune, "Mike Anthony: UConn's Breanna Stewart and Sue Bird, WNBA champions after missing last season with injuries, are as resilient as they are brilliant," 9 Oct. 2020 In his 10-year tenure as dean of Harvard Business School, Mr. Nohria largely tried to keep the school from taking stances on social issues that could be seen as political. Patrick Thomas, WSJ, "Harvard Business School Names New Dean," 9 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun An ice cream social was planned for Tuesday in New Windsor, and another is planned for Union Bridge on Thursday from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in the fire department’s parking lot. Mary Grace Keller, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Keep counting: Carroll County in nation’s top 1% for census self-response, though numbers low in some areas," 19 Aug. 2020 From ice cream socials to neighborhood scavenger hunts and lemonade stands, 2020 summer activities may look a lot like those of your youth. Eliza Mackintosh, CNN, "What you need to know about coronavirus on Tuesday, May 26," 26 May 2020 But there are Zoom ice cream socials, and Zoom group dry-land workouts—and, as the Anchorage coaches learned, the small exuberance of glimpsing a friendly face in the next lane. National Geographic, "CREATE A FREE NAT GEO ACCOUNT TO CONTINUE READING," 22 May 2020 Speaking of TikTok, that trending socials platform isn’t just for your cool niece to obsess over for hours everday. Matt Wake | Mwake@al.com, al, "New help for local musicians/artists during pandemic," 1 May 2020 In New Hampshire, meantime, the Sanders campaign is leaning on Ben & Jerry’s co-founders Ben Cohen and Jerry Greenfield, who will host ice cream socials across the state. Ryan Teague Beckwith, Bloomberg.com, "Bernie Sanders Campaign to Hold ‘Caucus Concerts’ With Vampire Weekend, Bon Iver," 29 Apr. 2020 All parish meetings or socials including fish fries and bingos are canceled. Chris Mayhew, Cincinnati.com, "Northern Kentucky: Diocese of Covington: No Masses or fish fries to stop COVID-19," 18 Mar. 2020 Parties, sorority socials and beer pong nights have found a new home on Zoom. Erin Griffith, New York Times, "We Live in Zoom Now," 17 Mar. 2020 Beyond that, a seemingly endless stream of activities, from major concerts to church socials, have been canceled or postponed. Annysa Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Coronavirus disruption continues with statewide school shutdown, confirmed cases rising," 13 Mar. 2020

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

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Noun

1857, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for social

Adjective

Middle English, from Latin socialis, from socius companion, ally, associate; akin to Old English secg man, companion, Latin sequi to follow — more at sue

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Time Traveler for social

Time Traveler

The first known use of social was in the 14th century

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Statistics for social

Last Updated

17 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Social.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/social. Accessed 24 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for social

social

adjective
How to pronounce social (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of social

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: relating to or involving activities in which people spend time talking to each other or doing enjoyable things with each other
: liking to be with and talk to people : happy to be with people
: of or relating to people or society in general

social

noun

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

: an informal social event for members of a group

social

adjective
so·​cial | \ ˈsō-shəl How to pronounce social (audio) \

Kids Definition of social

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : enjoying other people : sociable a social person
2 : relating to interaction with other people especially for pleasure a busy social life
3 : of or relating to human beings as a group Marriage and family are social institutions.
4 : living naturally in groups or communities Bees are social insects.
5 : relating to or based on rank in a particular society social classes

Other Words from social

socially adverb socially active

social

noun

Kids Definition of social (Entry 2 of 2)

: a friendly gathering usually for a special reason

social

adjective
so·​cial | \ ˈsō-shəl How to pronounce social (audio) \

Medical Definition of social

1a : tending to form cooperative and interdependent relationships with others of one's kind
b : living and breeding in more or less organized communities social insects
2 : of or relating to human society, the interaction of the individual and the group, or the welfare of human beings as members of society immature social behavior

Other Words from social

socially \ -​ē How to pronounce socially (audio) \ adverb

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Comments on social

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