[ trahyb ]
/ traɪb /
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See synonyms for: tribe / tribes on Thesaurus.com

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Origin of tribe

First recorded in 1200–50; Middle English, from Old French tribu, from Latin tribus “tribe,” originally, any of the three divisions of the Roman people; perhaps of Etruscan origin, perhaps a derivative of trēs (masculine and feminine), tria (neuter) “three” (combining form tri-) + -bus, a suffix of unclear formation; See three


subtribe, nounun·der·tribe, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use tribe in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for tribe

/ (traɪb) /

a social division of a people, esp of a preliterate people, defined in terms of common descent, territory, culture, etc
(an ethnic or ancestral division of ancient cultures, esp of one of the following)
  1. any of the three divisions of the ancient Romans, the Latins, Sabines, and Etruscans
  2. one of the later political divisions of the Roman people
  3. any of the 12 divisions of ancient Israel, each of which was named after and believed to be descended from one of the 12 patriarchs
  4. a phyle of ancient Greece
informal, often jocular
  1. a large number of persons, animals, etc
  2. a specific class or group of persons
  3. a family, esp a large one
biology a taxonomic group that is a subdivision of a subfamily
stockbreeding a strain of animals descended from a common female ancestor through the female line

Derived forms of tribe

tribeless, adjective

Word Origin for tribe

C13: from Latin tribus; probably related to Latin trēs three
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

Medical definitions for tribe

[ trīb ]

An occasional taxonomic category placed between a subfamily and a genus or between a suborder and a family and usually containing several genera.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.