1 of 2


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

transitive verb

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


2 of 2


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

Examples of surround in a Sentence

Verb 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. Noun the vast, featureless surround of the desert was strangely appealing to him
Recent Examples on the Web
Religious rhetoric surrounding Trump and the assassination attempt is likely to become supercharged at this week's Republican National Convention as tens of thousands of the party's faithful, many of whom are evangelical Christians, gather en masse in Milwaukee. Chris Ullery, USA TODAY, 14 July 2024 Secret Service agents surrounded him and took him off the stage, his face streaked with what appeared to be blood. Kenneth Dickerman, Washington Post, 14 July 2024
The 1980s brought a fascination with war and with surrounds both urban and natural, fervently illustrated. News Desk, Artforum, 1 July 2024 Be sure to wipe away dust from all niches, ledges, and the top of your shower surround, too. 10. Jessica Bennett, Better Homes & Gardens, 1 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for surround 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'surround.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



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

First Known Use


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


1893, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of surround was circa 1616

Dictionary Entries Near surround

Cite this Entry

“Surround.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 verb
sur·​round sə-ˈrau̇nd How to pronounce surround (audio)
: to enclose on all sides : encircle


2 of 2 noun
: something (as a border) that surrounds

More from Merriam-Webster on surround

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