Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

surround - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb [transitive] [often passive] surround pronunciation in British English /səˈraʊnd/
Word Forms
present tense
present participlesurrounding
past tensesurrounded
past participlesurrounded
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  1. 1
    to be all around or on all sides of someone or something
    He found himself surrounded by an admiring crowd.
    Can you name the states that surround Colorado?
    surround something with something: People are surrounding their homes with barbed wire fences.
    1. a.
      to stand on all sides of a place, in order to stop someone from escaping
      Armed police quickly surrounded the building.
      You are surrounded! Put down your weapons!
  2. 2
    to be closely connected with a situation or an event
    Uncertainty surrounds the future of the industry.
    The book was surrounded by controversy.
  3. 3
    to be near someone all the time
    She grew up surrounded by older children.
    surround yourself with something: Maureen loved to surround herself with art.


a course of study which is much shorter than a university course and focuses on the skills you need for a job, especially computer-related skills

BuzzWord Article

Word of the Day


a stupid person

Open Dictionary


an ancient Roman system of underfloor heating, used to heat houses with hot air; from the Latin 'hypocaustum'

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog