noun, often attributive
\ ˈyüth How to pronounce youth (audio) \
plural youths\ ˈyüt͟hz How to pronounce youths (audio) , ˈyüths How to pronounce youths (audio) \

Definition of youth

1a : the time of life when one is young especially : the period between childhood and maturity
b : the early period of existence, growth, or development
2a : a young person especially : a young male between adolescence and maturity
b : young persons or creatures usually plural in construction
3 : the quality or state of being youthful : youthfulness

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Synonyms for youth


boy, boychick (or boychik), boyo [Irish], callant [chiefly Scottish], lad, laddie, nipper, shaveling, shaver, sonny, stripling, tad

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Examples of youth in a Sentence

She had a troubled youth. He spent his youth in the Midwest. He got into a lot of trouble in his youth. a generation trying to recapture lost youth when the industry was still in its youth Four youths are suspected of starting the fire.
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Recent Examples on the Web

According to research from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, which combined data from 2016-17, Kentucky has the third-highest rate of youth obesity out of all 50 states: nearly one in five children from the ages of 10 to 17. Benjamin Tobin, The Courier-Journal, "Starting now, Louisville restaurants may be fined for lacking healthy kids meal options," 10 June 2019 The team focused on homeless youth age 18-24, but say their findings could be applied to any age group. Gary Warth, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Researchers find environment perpetuates stigma of homelessness," 9 June 2019 About 220 offenders have been convicted or took plea deals, and dozens of cases are pending including pastors, ministers, youth pastors, Sunday school teachers, deacons and church volunteers., "Southern Baptists will address clergy sex abuse; victims plan rally," 9 June 2019 In addition, 1,953 turkeys were taken during the two-day youth hunt and 323 were killed in Learn to Hunt programs. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Spring turkey hunters register 38,556 birds, second lowest in 20 years," 8 June 2019 Looking back at 2019: With a roster mixed with experience and youth, guided the Rattlers to a strong showing throughout the season. Terrence Thomas,, "Reagan, Burbank athletes headline All-Area tennis teams," 8 June 2019 After being wrongfully convicted, he was sentenced to five to 10 years in a youth correctional facility and ultimately served six years before being released. Heather Finn, Good Housekeeping, "Where Are the Central Park Five Now? What to Know After Watching 'When They See Us'," 8 June 2019 The Premier League club will also have been looking to offload their youth product, whilst the latter would no doubt want to maximise his time on the pitch at a crucial stage in his development., "West Ham Youngster Reece Oxford Set to Complete Permanent Move to Augsburg," 8 June 2019 Two chorales from Bach’s St. Matthew Passion were sung admirably by the Foundation’s youth chorus. Daniel Gelernter, National Review, "‘Bach to the Future’: Concert to Make One Feel Lucky to Live in New York," 8 June 2019

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for youth

Middle English youthe, from Old English geoguth; akin to Old English geong young — more at young

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Statistics for youth

Last Updated

13 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for youth

The first known use of youth was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for youth



English Language Learners Definition of youth

: the time of life when someone is young : the time when a young person has not yet become an adult
: the time when something is new and not yet established
: a teenage boy or young man


\ ˈyüth How to pronounce youth (audio) \
plural youths\ ˈyüt͟hz , ˈyüths \

Kids Definition of youth

1 : the time of life between being a child and an adult He spent his youth in Europe.
2 : a young man an imaginative youth
3 : young people the youth of today
4 : the quality or state of being young Her youth proved to be an advantage.

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More from Merriam-Webster on youth

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with youth

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for youth

Spanish Central: Translation of youth

Nglish: Translation of youth for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of youth for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about youth

Comments on youth

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