[ goor-oo, goo-roo ]
/ ˈgʊər u, gʊˈru /
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See synonyms for: guru / gurus on Thesaurus.com


Hinduism. a preceptor giving personal religious instruction.
an intellectual or spiritual guide or leader.
any person who counsels or advises; mentor: The elder senator was her political guru.
a leader in a particular field: the city's cultural gurus.



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“Was” is used for the indicative past tense of “to be,” and “were” is only used for the subjunctive past tense.

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Origin of guru

1820–30; <Hindi gurū<Sanskrit guru venerable, weighty


gu·ru·ship, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for guru

British Dictionary definitions for guru

/ (ˈɡʊruː, ˈɡuːruː) /


a Hindu or Sikh religious teacher or leader, giving personal spiritual guidance to his disciples
often derogatory a leader or chief theoretician of a movement, esp a spiritual or religious cult
often facetious a leading authority in a particular fielda cricketing guru

Derived forms of guru

guruship, noun

Word Origin for guru

C17: from Hindi gurū, from Sanskrit guruh weighty
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

Cultural definitions for guru

[ (goor-ooh, goo-rooh) ]

In Hinduism, a teacher or spiritual leader.

notes for guru

By extension, a “guru” is a teacher who attracts disciples or followers.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.