sur·​round | \ sə-ˈrau̇nd How to pronounce surround (audio) \
surrounded; surrounding; surrounds

Definition of surround

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a(1) : to enclose on all sides : envelop the crowd surrounded her
(2) : to enclose so as to cut off communication or retreat : invest entry 2
b : to form or be a member of the entourage of flatterers who surround the king
c : to constitute part of the environment of surrounded by poverty
d : to extend around the margin or edge of : encircle a wall surrounds the old city
2 : to cause to be surrounded by something surrounded himself with friends



Definition of surround (Entry 2 of 2)

: something (such as a border or ambient environment) that surrounds from urban centre to rural surround— Emrys Jones

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Examples of surround in a Sentence


A wall surrounds the old city. They had the suspect surrounded. She was suddenly surrounded by a crowd of excited fans. There's a lot of uncertainty surrounding the decision. His departure was surrounded by secrecy.


the vast, featureless surround of the desert was strangely appealing to him
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Joyce Anita Russo, 80, of Rocky Hill, passed away Monday, August 26, 2019 at Hartford Hospital surrounded by family and friends., "Joyce A. Russo," 1 Sep. 2019 Being surrounded by a circle of friends who genuinely care for us made me feel incredibly blessed. New York Times, "After Countless Proposals, She Finally Said Yes. Again.," 31 Aug. 2019 Look at Daniel Jones, the new toast of New York, surrounded by a swarm of reporters as erstwhile Super Bowl hero Eli Manning, mouth slightly agape, struggles to put on a shoe. The Mmqb Staff,, "Favorite Storylines of the 2019 NFL Offseason," 30 Aug. 2019 In the middle of a rawhide blanket surrounded by dozens of participants, Casey Mellott was launched into the air at the World Eskimo Indian Olympics Blanket Toss. Samantha Davenport, Anchorage Daily News, "Daredevils, funnel cake, bonsai: Scenes from the Alaska State Fair," 29 Aug. 2019 Guests looking for a more lavish experience can try the lobster bottle service, in which up to 12 people receive a 15-pound lobster imported from the East Coast and surrounded by ramen, plus wine from Empathy Wines. Priscella Vega, Daily Pilot, "It’s all about the noodles — and Snoop Dogg — at Nood Beach festival in Huntington Beach," 29 Aug. 2019 As Napa Valley's only organic herbal tea grower and one of a small group nationally, Annie Favia-Erickson nurtures herbs on just a few acres of land surrounded by neighbors' vineyards. Sheryl Jean, Dallas News, "A small organic herbal tea farm flourishes in Northern California wine country," 28 Aug. 2019 The 66-year-old professor lives in an old farmhouse at the end of a street surrounded by trees. Keith Bierygolick,, "Save the lambs: ‘Most hated man in Yellow Springs’ fights to keep Ohio college from killing animals," 28 Aug. 2019 Babcock and Makoid positioned the home so that the living space, kitchen, and dining areas are essentially surrounded by the outdoors. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "This Home Is Made for Indoor-Outdoor Living," 28 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The optional surround-view camera system has front and rear views including wide-angle modes. Mark Maynard, San Diego Union-Tribune, "2019 Maserati Ghibli S Q4: from savior to the sidelines," 7 July 2019 Cooke’s voice, backed by the ethereal harmonies of his gospel group, the Soul Stirrers, pulsated along the curved walls of acoustic tiles from a surround-sound system. Washington Post, "The Museum of the Bible: The last place in D.C. you might expect to hear Queen, Kanye and the Clash," 24 June 2019 At the rear, quad exhausts get brushed silver surrounds. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "Cadillac revamps its sportiest lineup, adds new CT4-V and CT5-V sedans," 31 May 2019 The mirror in the bathroom has pine-branch surrounds; there are Pendleton throws on the beds and couches—roughing it, this isn’t. Alec Scott, Sunset Magazine, "Lake Effect: On Reviving a Family Tradition with Your Closest Friends," 22 Jan. 2018 Step down into the living room and adjoining dining room, which are filled with natural light and feature a front-facing picture window, and a fireplace with a brick surround. Monica Lander, The Mercury News, "Sponsored: Home’s ideal setting in Almaden Valley is close to beautiful parks and top-rated schools," 19 June 2019 The chunky fireplace surround, which had been taupe in color, now is a refreshing white. Nancy Schoeffler,, "Decorator Showhouse In West Hartford A Showcase Of Inspired Home Design," 29 Apr. 2018 New this year are Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, a retuned suspension, and a surround-view parking camera. James Raia, Houston Chronicle, "Mazda CX-9: Family hauler is versatile, well-equipped, has plenty of overall appeal," 8 June 2019 In Avalon and its surrounds, kayaking, stand up paddleboarding, and e-bike and golf cart rentals are also par for the course. Laura Kiniry, Smithsonian, "The 15 Best Small Towns to Visit in 2019," 6 June 2019

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


circa 1616, in the meaning defined at sense 1a(1)


1893, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for surround


Middle English, to flood, inundate, from Anglo-French surunder, from Late Latin superundare, to overflow, from Latin super- + unda wave; influenced in meaning by round entry 5 — more at water

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Statistics for surround

Last Updated

4 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for surround

The first known use of surround was circa 1616

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More Definitions for surround



English Language Learners Definition of surround

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to be on every side of (someone or something)
: to move close to (someone or something) on all sides often in order to stop a person from escaping
: to be closely related or connected to (something)



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

: a border or an area that is around the outside edge of something


sur·​round | \ sə-ˈrau̇nd How to pronounce surround (audio) \
surrounded; surrounding

Kids Definition of surround

1 : to enclose on all sides : encircle A fence surrounds the property.
2 : to be closely related or connected to … my actions will help to dispel this terrible myth of evil that seems to surround rats everywhere.— Kate DiCamillo, The Tale of Despereaux

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More from Merriam-Webster on surround

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with surround

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for surround

Spanish Central: Translation of surround

Nglish: Translation of surround for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of surround for Arabic Speakers

Comments on surround

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


readily or continually undergoing change

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