[ groom, groom ]
See synonyms for: groomgroomedgrooming on

  1. a bridegroom.

  2. a man or boy in charge of horses or the stable.

  1. any of several officers of the English royal household.

  2. Archaic. a manservant.

verb (used with object)
  1. to tend carefully as to person and dress; make neat or tidy.

  2. to clean, brush, and otherwise tend (a horse, dog, etc.).

  1. to prepare (a trail) for a specific use, such as skiing, biking, or hiking: The resort is currently grooming 7 miles of cross-country ski trails for your enjoyment this winter.

  2. to prepare for a position, election, etc.: Both of these young goalies are being groomed for roles in the NHL.

  3. to condition or manipulate (a victim) emotionally over time, as through friendship, gifts, flattery, etc., in order to entrap the person in a sexually abusive or predatory relationship.

  4. (of an animal) to tend (itself or another) by removing dirt, parasites, or specks of other matter from the fur, skin, feathers, etc.: often performed as a social act.

Origin of groom

First recorded in 1200–50; Middle English grom, grome, groum “infant boy, boy, youth, groom”; further origin obscure; akin to grow

Other words from groom

  • groom·er, noun
  • groom·ish, adjective
  • groom·ish·ly, adverb
  • non·groom·ing, adjective
  • re·groom, verb (used with object)
  • un·groomed, adjective

Words Nearby groom Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use groom in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for groom


/ (ɡruːm, ɡrʊm) /

  1. a person employed to clean and look after horses

  1. any of various officers of a royal or noble household

  2. archaic a male servant or attendant

  3. archaic, poetic a young man

  1. to make or keep (clothes, appearance, etc) clean and tidy

  2. to rub down, clean, and smarten (a horse, dog, etc)

  1. to train or prepare for a particular task, occupation, etc: to groom someone for the Presidency

  2. to win the confidence of (a victim) in order to a commit sexual assault on him or her

Origin of groom

C13 grom manservant; perhaps related to Old English grōwan to grow

Derived forms of groom

  • groomer, noun
  • grooming, noun

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