wom·​an | \ ˈwu̇-mən How to pronounce woman (audio) , especially Southern ˈwō- How to pronounce woman (audio) or ˈwə- How to pronounce woman (audio) \
plural women\ ˈwi-​mən How to pronounce woman (audio) \

Definition of woman

1a : an adult female person
b : a woman belonging to a particular category (as by birth, residence, membership, or occupation) usually used in combination councilwoman
2 : womankind
3 : distinctively feminine nature : womanliness
4 : a woman who is a servant or personal attendant
5a chiefly dialectal : wife
b : mistress
6 : a woman who is extremely fond of or devoted to something specified I'm a chocolate woman through and through, but one bite of West's banana pudding cupcake and I was sold.— Hattie Brown Garrow

Other Words from woman

woman adjective
womanless \ ˈwu̇-​mən-​ləs How to pronounce woman (audio) , especially Southern  ˈwō-​ or  ˈwə-​ \ adjective

Synonyms for woman


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Examples of woman in a Sentence

She grew up to become a confident and beautiful woman. She is a grown woman. The store sells shoes for both men and women.
Recent Examples on the Web The man and woman did not want further police involvement. cleveland, 20 May 2022 Police found three men dead in the living room, and another man and woman shot but alive. Jozsef Papp, ajc, 18 May 2022 Two drivers, a man and a woman, were taken to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. Angela Cordoba Perez, The Arizona Republic, 18 May 2022 After a yearslong fight for equal pay, U.S. Soccer and the women’s and men’s national teams have announced a historic collective bargaining agreement to close the gender pay gap and assure every player, man or woman, is paid equally. Marlene Lenthang, NBC News, 18 May 2022 In 1972, researchers launched the Pioneer 10 space probe, which contained a small gold plaque with an illustration of a naked man and woman, along with Earth’s location in the galaxy and other messaging. Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 18 May 2022 Authorities are asking for the public’s help in identifying a man and a woman wanted in connection with a robbery in east Birmingham. Carol Robinson | Crobinson@al.com, al, 17 May 2022 Officers found the couple inside the home and started first aid until paramedics arrived and took over, but the man and woman died before they could be taken to a hospital, police said. David Hernandez, San Diego Union-Tribune, 17 May 2022 Better to re-investigate Iran-Contra or slap big shoulder pads on every jacket of every man’s or woman’s suit ever made. Mark Feeney, BostonGlobe.com, 16 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'woman.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of woman

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

History and Etymology for woman

Middle English, from Old English wīfman, from wīf woman, wife + man human being, man

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Time Traveler for woman

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near woman



woman's/feminine touch

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Statistics for woman

Last Updated

24 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Woman.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/woman. Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for woman


wom·​an | \ ˈwu̇-mən How to pronounce woman (audio) \
plural women\ ˈwi-​mən \

Kids Definition of woman

1 : an adult female person
2 : women considered as a group

More from Merriam-Webster on woman

Nglish: Translation of woman for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of woman for Arabic Speakers


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