[ suh-sahy-i-tee ]
See synonyms for: societysocieties on

noun,plural so·ci·e·ties.
  1. an organized group of persons associated together for religious, benevolent, cultural, scientific, political, patriotic, or other purposes.

  2. a body of individuals living as members of a community; community.

  1. the body of human beings generally, associated or viewed as members of a community: the evolution of human society.

  2. a highly structured system of human organization for large-scale community living that normally furnishes protection, continuity, security, and a national identity for its members: American society.

  3. such a system characterized by its dominant economic class or form: middle-class society;industrial society.

  4. those with whom one has companionship.

  5. companionship; company: to enjoy the society of good friends.

  6. the social life of wealthy, prominent, or fashionable persons.

  7. the social class that comprises such persons.

  8. the condition of those living in companionship with others, or in a community, rather than in isolation.

  9. Biology. a closely integrated group of social organisms of the same species exhibiting division of labor.

  10. Ecclesiastical. ecclesiastical society.

  1. of, relating to, or characteristic of elegant society: a society photographer.

Origin of society

First recorded in 1525–35; from Middle French societe, from Latin societās, equivalent to soci(us) “partner, comrade” + -etās, variant of -itās -ity after a vowel

synonym study For society

1. See circle.

Other words for society

Other words from society

  • so·ci·e·ty·less, adjective
  • in·ter·so·ci·e·ty, adjective
  • non·so·ci·e·ty, noun, plural non·so·ci·e·ties.
  • sub·so·ci·e·ty, noun, plural sub·so·ci·e·ties.
  • un·der·so·ci·e·ty, noun, plural un·der·so·ci·e·ties.

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

How to use society in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for society


/ (səˈsaɪətɪ) /

nounplural -ties
  1. the totality of social relationships among organized groups of human beings or animals

  2. a system of human organizations generating distinctive cultural patterns and institutions and usually providing protection, security, continuity, and a national identity for its members

  1. such a system with reference to its mode of social and economic organization or its dominant class: middle-class society

  2. those with whom one has companionship

  3. an organized group of people associated for some specific purpose or on account of some common interest: a learned society

    • the privileged class of people in a community, esp as considered superior or fashionable

    • (as modifier): a society woman

  4. the social life and intercourse of such people: to enter society as a debutante

  5. companionship; the fact or state of being together with someone else: I enjoy her society

  6. ecology a small community of plants within a larger association

Origin of society

C16: via Old French societé from Latin societās, from socius a comrade

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

Other Idioms and Phrases with society


see under mutual admiration society.

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