WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2019
peo•ple /ˈpipəl/USA pronunciation
n., pl. -ples for 3, v.,. -pled, -pling. n.
WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2019
v. [~ + object]
- persons as a group;
persons in general:[plural]There were too many people in the room.
- human beings, as distinguished from animals or other beings:[plural]All people have names.
- the entire body of persons who make up a community, tribe, etc., in that they have a common culture, religion, or the like:[countable]a hard-working, industrious people; the Jewish people.
- the ordinary persons of a community, country, etc., as distinguished from those who have wealth, rank, etc.;
the citizens of a state who are allowed to vote:[plural; the + ~]the common people;a man of the people;a people's army.
- the followers of, or the persons working for, a ruler, employer, etc.:[plural]The tycoon promised that his people would look at our proposals.
- a person's family or relatives:[plural]Her people have lived here for generations.
- (added to words or roots to make nouns that refer to the persons of any particular group, profession, etc.;
it is sometimes used to avoid making reference to the sex or gender of the persons designated:sales + people→ salespeople (not: salesmen).
- to fill with people;
populate:The area was first peopled by nomads.
(pē′pəl),USA pronunciation n., pl. -ples for 4, v., -pled, -pling. n.
- persons indefinitely or collectively;
persons in general:to find it easy to talk to people; What will people think?
- persons, whether men, women, or children, considered as numerable individuals forming a group:Twenty people volunteered to help.
- human beings, as distinguished from animals or other beings.
- the entire body of persons who constitute a community, tribe, nation, or other group by virtue of a common culture, history, religion, or the like:the people of Australia; the Jewish people.
- the persons of any particular group, company, or number (sometimes used in combination):the people of a parish;educated people;salespeople.
- the ordinary persons, as distinguished from those who have wealth, rank, influence, etc.:a man of the people.
- the subjects, followers, or subordinates of a ruler, leader, employer, etc.:the king and his people.
- Governmentthe body of enfranchised citizens of a state:representatives chosen by the people.
- a person's family or relatives:My grandmother's people came from Iowa.
- Government(used in the possessive in Communist or left-wing countries to indicate that an institution operates under the control of or for the benefit of the people, esp. under Communist leadership):people's republic; people's army.
- animals of a specified kind:the monkey people of the forest.
- to furnish with people;
- to supply or stock as if with people:a meadow peopled with flowers.
- Latin populus. See popular
- Anglo-French poeple, Old French pueple
- Middle English peple 1225–75
- 4.See corresponding entry in Unabridged See race 2.
People is usually followed by a plural verb and referred to by a plural pronoun:People are always looking for a bargain. The people have made their choice.The possessive is formed regularly, with the apostrophe before the -s: people's desire for a bargain;
the people's choice. When people means "the entire body of persons who constitute a community or other group by virtue of a common culture, history, etc.,'' it is used as a singular, with the plural peoples:This people shares characteristics with certain inhabitants of central Asia. The aboriginal peoples of the Western Hemisphere speak many different languages.The formation of the possessive is regular;
the singular is people's and the plural is peoples'.At one time, some usage guides maintained that people could not be preceded by a number, as in Fewer than 30 people showed up. This use is now unquestionably standard in all contexts.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
people /ˈpiːpəl/ n (usually functioning as plural)
- persons collectively or in general
- a group of persons considered together: blind people
- ( pl peoples) the persons living in a country and sharing the same nationality: the French people
- one's family: he took her home to meet his people
- persons loyal to someone powerful: the king's people accompanied him in exile
- the people ⇒ the mass of persons without special distinction, privileges, etc
- the body of persons in a country, esp those entitled to vote
Etymology: 13th Century: from Old French pople, from Latin populus; see populace
- (transitive) to provide with or as if with people or inhabitants
'peoples' also found in these entries: