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people

[ pee-puhl ]
/ ˈpi pəl /
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See synonyms for: people / peopled / peoples / peopling on Thesaurus.com

noun, plural peo·ples for 4.

verb (used with object), peo·pled, peo·pling.

to furnish with people; populate.
to supply or stock as if with people: a meadow peopled with flowers.

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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 people

First recorded in 1225–75; Middle English peple, from Anglo-French poeple, Old French pueple, from Latin populus; see popular

synonym study for people

4. See race2.

usage note for people

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.

grammar notes for people

See person.

OTHER WORDS FROM people

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH people

people , persons (see grammar note at person)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for people

British Dictionary definitions for people

people
/ (ˈpiːpəl) /

noun (usually functioning as plural)

verb

(tr) to provide with or as if with people or inhabitants

Word Origin for people

C13: from Old French pople, from Latin populus; see populace

undefined people

See person
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

Idioms and Phrases with people

people

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
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