society

noun
so·​ci·​e·​ty | \ sə-ˈsī-ə-tē How to pronounce society (audio) \
plural societies

Definition of society

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : companionship or association with one's fellows : friendly or intimate intercourse : company
2 : a voluntary association of individuals for common ends especially : an organized group working together or periodically meeting because of common interests, beliefs, or profession
3a : an enduring and cooperating social group whose members have developed organized patterns of relationships through interaction with one another
b : a community, nation, or broad grouping of people having common traditions, institutions, and collective activities and interests
4a : a part of a community that is a unit distinguishable by particular aims or standards of living or conduct : a social circle or a group of social circles having a clearly marked identity literary society
b : a part of the community that sets itself apart as a leisure class and that regards itself as the arbiter of fashion and manners
5a : a natural group of plants usually of a single species or habit within an association
b : the progeny of a pair of insects when constituting a social unit (such as a hive of bees) broadly : an interdependent system of organisms or biological units

society

adjective

Definition of society (Entry 2 of 2)

: of, relating to, or typical of fashionable society

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Examples of society in a Sentence

Noun Poverty hurts society as a whole. We need to do more to help the poorer members of our society. the values of Western society She was introduced to society at a formal reception. The club's members are drawn from the ranks of high society.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The coronavirus pandemic is obviously posing challenges for every aspect of society. Lee Billings, Scientific American, "Space Telescope Director Says Best Is Yet to Come for Hubble," 27 Apr. 2020 With each practiced flip of a mailbox lid, Bezerra reassures another household that, although the coronavirus has upended much of society, many basic services are running like clockwork. Trevor Hughes, USA TODAY, "Postal carriers, delivery workers keep Americans safe at home during coronavirus," 25 Apr. 2020 Dairies are among the hardest hit, while food continues to be produced on the nation’s farmland, the pandemic’s lockdown of society has caused a seismic shift in what people are buying and eating. Chronicle Staff, SFChronicle.com, "Coronavirus news from the Bay Area: April 11-12," 24 Apr. 2020 The spread of coronavirus and the widespread lockdowns accompanying it have put pressure on every element of society. Christian Holub, EW.com, "Get a first look at Jim Lee's Bane sketch to raise money for comic shops," 24 Apr. 2020 How Inequality Became Big Business, Schwartz catalogs the many ways the U.S. economy has grown more segmented, with the rich leading lives increasingly remote from the rest of society. Kanishk Tharoor, The New Republic, "The Exclusivity Economy," 21 Apr. 2020 Michael Haneke) Michael Haneke, the Austrian master of hostility and despair, has made many films (such as Funny Games, The Seventh Continent, and The White Ribbon) that reflect the disintegration of society. David Sims, The Atlantic, "22 Movies About the End of the World to Watch Now," 18 Apr. 2020 But the daylight hours highlight the disparity of a society in which social distancing is not a reality for many. Chiara Goia, National Geographic, "THE BEST OF NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC DELIVERED TO YOUR INBOX," 17 Apr. 2020 Seeing doctors dismiss her mother was one of the first concrete ways Steinem realized the anti-woman bias that infiltrated every aspect of society. Chelsey Sanchez, Harper's BAZAAR, "A Closer Look at Gloria Steinem's Early Life and Work," 15 Apr. 2020

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

Noun

circa 1513, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1693, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for society

Noun

Middle French societé, from Latin societat-, societas, from socius companion — more at social

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Time Traveler for society

Time Traveler

The first known use of society was circa 1513

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Statistics for society

Last Updated

30 Apr 2020

Cite this Entry

“Society.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/society. Accessed 26 May. 2020.

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More Definitions for society

society

noun
How to pronounce society (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of society

: people in general thought of as living together in organized communities with shared laws, traditions, and values
: the people of a particular country, area, time, etc., thought of especially as an organized community
: people who are fashionable and wealthy

society

noun
so·​ci·​ety | \ sə-ˈsī-ə-tē How to pronounce society (audio) \
plural societies

Kids Definition of society

1 : a community or group of people having common traditions, institutions, and interests medieval society western society
2 : all of the people of the world Medical advances help society.
3 : a group of persons with a common interest, belief, or purpose historical societies
4 : friendly association with others He avoided the society of other painters.

society

noun
so·​ci·​e·​ty | \ sə-ˈsī-ə-tē How to pronounce society (audio) \
plural societies

Legal Definition of society

1 : the benefits of love, care, affection, and companionship that family members receive from each other sought damages for loss of society from his wife's wrongful death — compare consortium
2 : a voluntary association of individuals dedicated to common ends a conservation society
3 : a community, nation, or broad grouping of people having common traditions, institutions, and collective activities and interests

Other Words from society

societal \ -​sī-​ət-​ᵊl How to pronounce societal (audio) \ adjective

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