bach·​e·​lor | \ ˈbach-lər How to pronounce bachelor (audio) , ˈba-chə- \

Definition of bachelor

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a young knight who follows the banner of another
2 : a person who has received a degree from a college, university, or professional school usually after four years of study bachelor of arts also : the degree itself received a bachelor of laws
3a : an unmarried man He chooses to remain a bachelor.
b : a male animal (such as a fur seal) without a mate during breeding time



Definition of bachelor (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : suitable for or occupied by a single person a bachelor apartment
2 : unmarried bachelor women bachelor parents

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Other Words from bachelor


bachelordom \ ˈbach-​lər-​dəm How to pronounce bachelor (audio) , ˈba-​chə-​ \ noun
bachelorhood \ ˈbach-​lər-​ˌhu̇d How to pronounce bachelor (audio) , ˈba-​chə-​ \ noun

Examples of bachelor in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Rachel Eager spent last fall at home, taking the last class for her bachelor’s degree over Zoom while waiting to be recalled to her job at a New York City after-school program. New York Times, 19 Oct. 2021 Raised in Stockton, Trejo earned her bachelor’s degree at UC Davis and her doctorate at UC San Diego School of Medicine. Paul Sisson, San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 Oct. 2021 Corey was determined to achieve the best in life and was working hard toward receiving his bachelor’s degree in December 2001. Andrea Cavallier, NBC News, 9 Oct. 2021 Irtefa obtained his bachelor’s in computer science from the University of Urbana-Champaign. Frederick Daso, Forbes, 4 Oct. 2021 However, Hudspeth’s relationship with Webb began decades before the turn of the millennium: The two were colleagues at H-E-B when Hudspeth was pursuing his bachelor’s degree in the late 1960s. Caroline Tien, San Antonio Express-News, 30 Sep. 2021 By his bachelor’s degree from an Ohio college when Jim Crow reigned supreme. Washington Post, 23 Sep. 2021 Young is a 1965 graduate of Marietta High School and earned his bachelor’s degree in business from Bliss College and his master’s degree in both human resources management and health care administration from Central Michigan University. Sam Boyer, cleveland, 28 Aug. 2021 Higgins earned his bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College and medical degree from the Yale School of Medicine., 19 Aug. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The bachelor elephant group at Noah's Ark plays a key supporting role serving wider African Elephant conservation efforts as an important part of the European Endangered Species Programme. Vanessa Etienne,, 24 June 2021 Pumpkin, who lost her elderly partner, convinced Harris to forego his bachelor ways in the name of love. Mallory Hughes, CNN, 7 Dec. 2020

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1840, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bachelor


Middle English bacheler "knight lacking retainers, squire, young man (especially an unmarried one), person holding the lowest university degree," borrowed from Anglo-French, going back to Medieval Latin *baccalāris, variant of baccalārius, bachelārius "serf without land living in the lord's household, vassal lacking a fief, knight without retainers, young clerk, student," of obscure origin


attributive use of bachelor entry 1

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Time Traveler for bachelor

Time Traveler

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

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Last Updated

27 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Bachelor.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Oct. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of bachelor

: a man who is not married especially : a man who has never been married
: a person who has received a bachelor's degree


bach·​e·​lor | \ ˈba-chə-lər How to pronounce bachelor (audio) , ˈbach-lər \

Kids Definition of bachelor

: a man who is not married

Other Words from bachelor

bachelorhood \ -​ˌhu̇d \ noun


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