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celebrity

[suh-leb-ri-tee]
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noun, plural ce·leb·ri·ties for 1.
  1. a famous or well-known person.
  2. fame; renown.
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Origin of celebrity

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin celebritās multitude, fame, festal celebration, equivalent to celebr- (stem of celeber) often repeated, famous + -itās -ity
Related formsnon·ce·leb·ri·ty, noun, plural non·ce·leb·ri·ties.

Synonyms

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

someone, figure, luminary, personage, hero, star, personality, superstar, stardom, popularity, somebody, name, ace, VIP, bigwig, notable, heavyweight, immortal, lion, worthy

Examples from the Web for celebrity

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • But those who are caught in the clutches of celebrity at the age of twenty know nothing.

    My Double Life

    Sarah Bernhardt

  • Judge Andrews gave immediate promise of celebrity as an advocate.

  • But let Celebrity stand there and enjoy her hour; to-morrow the Ploughman will come.

    The Book of Khalid

    Ameen Rihani

  • Celebrity has fallen on me at last, though, and I'm to go at Easter.

  • He may have become a celebrity, a rich man,—Heaven knows what.

    One Of Them

    Charles James Lever


British Dictionary definitions for celebrity

celebrity

noun plural -ties
  1. a famous persona show-business celebrity
  2. fame or notoriety
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for celebrity

n.

late 14c., "solemn rite or ceremony," from Old French celebrité "celebration" or directly from Latin celibritatem (nominative celebritas) "multitude, fame," from celeber "frequented, populous" (see celebrate). Meaning "condition of being famous" is from c.1600; that of "famous person" is from 1849.

When the old gods withdraw, the empty thrones cry out for a successor, and with good management, or even without management, almost any perishable bag of bones may be hoisted into the vacant seat. [E.R. Dodds, "The Greeks and the Irrational"]
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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper