• synonyms


[ flok ]
/ flɒk /


a number of animals of one kind, especially sheep, goats, or birds, that keep or feed together or are herded together.
a large number of people; crowd.
a large group of things: a flock of letters to answer.
(in New Testament and ecclesiastical use)
  1. the Christian church in relation to Christ.
  2. a single congregation in relation to its pastor.
Archaic. a band or company of persons.

verb (used without object)

to gather or go in a flock or crowd: They flocked around the football hero.


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throng, brood, legion, colony, herd, multitude, gaggle, gather, converge, gathering, convoy, crowd, litter, assembly, drove, cloud, group, army, progeny, rout

Nearby words

flocculent precipitate, flocculently, flocculi, flocculus, floccus, flock, flock dot, flock paper, flockbed, flocking, flocky

Origin of flock

before 1000; (noun) Middle English; Old English floc; cognate with Old Norse flokkr; (v.) Middle English, derivative of the noun
1, 2 bevy, covey, flight, gaggle; brood, hatch, litter; shoal, school, swarm, group, company. Flock, drove, herd, pack refer to a company of animals, often under the care or guidance of someone. Flock is the popular term, which applies to groups of animals, especially of sheep or goats, and companies of birds: This lamb is the choicest of the flock. A flock of wild geese flew overhead. Drove is especially applied to a number of oxen, sheep, or swine when driven in a group: A drove of oxen was taken to market. A large drove of swine filled the roadway. Herd is usually applied to large animals such as cattle, originally meaning those under the charge of someone; but by extension, to other animals feeding or driven together: a buffalo herd; a herd of elephants. Pack applies to a number of animals kept together or keeping together for offense or defense: a pack of hounds kept for hunting; a pack of wolves. As applied to people, drove, herd, and pack carry a contemptuous implication.
Related formsflock·less, adjective

Usage note

Definition for flock (2 of 2)


[ flok ]
/ flɒk /


a lock or tuft of wool, hair, cotton, etc.
(sometimes used with a plural verb) wool refuse, shearings of cloth, old cloth torn to pieces, or the like, for upholstering furniture, stuffing mattresses, etc.
Also called flocking. (sometimes used with a plural verb) finely powdered wool, cloth, etc., used for producing a velvetlike pattern on wallpaper or cloth or for coating metal.

verb (used with object)

to stuff with flock, as a mattress.
to decorate or coat with flock, as wallpaper, cloth, or metal.

Origin of flock

1250–1300; Middle English flok < Old French floc < Latin floccus floccus. Compare Old High German floccho Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for flock

British Dictionary definitions for flock (1 of 2)


/ (flɒk) /

noun (sometimes functioning as plural)

a group of animals of one kind, esp sheep or birds
a large number of people; crowd
a body of Christians regarded as the pastoral charge of a priest, a bishop, the pope, etc
rare a band of people; group

verb (intr)

to gather together or move in a flock
to go in large numberspeople flocked to the church

Word Origin for flock

Old English flocc; related to Old Norse flokkr crowd, Middle Low German vlocke

British Dictionary definitions for flock (2 of 2)


/ (flɒk) /


a tuft, as of wool, hair, cotton, etc
  1. waste from fabrics such as cotton, wool, or other cloth used for stuffing mattresses, upholstered chairs, etc
  2. (as modifier)flock mattress
very small tufts of wool applied to fabrics, wallpaper, etc, to give a raised pattern
another word for floccule


(tr) to fill, cover, or ornament with flock
Derived Formsflocky, adjective

Word Origin for flock

C13: from Old French floc, from Latin floccus; probably related to Old High German floccho down, Norwegian flugsa snowflake
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