[ soh-shuhl ]
See synonyms for: socialsocialssocially on

  1. relating to, devoted to, or characterized by friendly companionship or relations: a social club.

  2. seeking or enjoying the companionship of others; friendly; sociable; gregarious.

  1. of, relating to, connected with, or suited to polite or fashionable society: a social event.

  2. living or disposed to live in companionship with others or in a community, rather than in isolation:People are social beings.

  3. of or relating to human society, especially as a body divided into classes according to status: social rank.

  4. involved in many social activities: We're so busy working, we have to be a little less social now.

  5. of or relating to the life, welfare, and relations of human beings in a community: social problems.

  6. noting or relating to activities designed to remedy or alleviate certain unfavorable conditions of life in a community, especially among poor people.

  7. relating to or advocating the theory or system of socialism.

  8. Digital Technology. noting or relating to online technologies, activities, etc., that promote companionship or communication with friends and other personal contacts: social websites such as Facebook; the use of social software to share expertise.: See also social media.

  9. Zoology. living habitually together in communities, as bees or ants.: Compare solitary (def. 8).

  10. Botany. growing in patches or clumps.

  11. Rare. occurring or taking place between allies or confederates.

  1. a social gathering or party, especially of or as given by an organized group: a church social.

  2. Digital Technology. social media: photos posted to social.

Origin of social

First recorded in 1350–1400; Middle English, Middle French, from Latin sociālis, equivalent to soci(us) “partner, comrade, ally” (derivative of sequī “to follow”) + -ālis -al1

Other words from social

  • so·cial·ly, adverb
  • so·cial·ness, noun
  • hy·per·so·cial, adjective
  • in·ter·so·cial, adjective
  • non·so·cial, adjective
  • pseu·do·so·cial, adjective
  • un·so·cial, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use social in a sentence

  • There is, indeed, Guly; this is a socialness which we have not shared before for months, and never may again.

British Dictionary definitions for social


/ (ˈsəʊʃəl) /

  1. living or preferring to live in a community rather than alone

  2. denoting or relating to human society or any of its subdivisions

  1. of, relating to, or characteristic of the experience, behaviour, and interaction of persons forming groups

  2. relating to or having the purpose of promoting companionship, communal activities, etc: a social club

  3. relating to or engaged in social services: a social worker

  4. relating to or considered appropriate to a certain class of society, esp one thought superior

  5. (esp of certain species of insects) living together in organized colonies: social bees Compare solitary (def. 6)

  6. (of plant species) growing in clumps, usually over a wide area

  1. an informal gathering, esp of an organized group, to promote companionship, communal activity, etc

Origin of social

C16: from Latin sociālis companionable, from socius a comrade

Derived forms of social

  • socially, adverb
  • socialness, 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