Definition of gather in English:

gather

verb

  • 1no object Come together; assemble or accumulate.

    ‘as soon as a crowd gathered, the police came’
    • ‘A crowd of 300 demonstrators gathered around the jail, hurling firebombs, rockets and stones at the patrol.’
    • ‘Crowds also gathered around a television where footage of the annual school drills from the 1960s was being shown.’
    • ‘From atop a tree-house, the big picture of a man with a white flowing beard gazed down on a merry crowd gathered around a huge cake.’
    • ‘Nearby, anxious crowds gathered around lists of injured posted on the walls of the hospital buildings.’
    • ‘He said that when he arrived on the scene at 2.46 pm a crowd of youths had gathered around the southern edge of the lagoon, off Northfield Lane.’
    • ‘Philip's statement brought a ripple of laughter from the crowd of assembled contestants gathered around the archery range.’
    • ‘It seems that a crowd of them had gathered around the quarrelling demonstrators, while the British cops attempted to keep the two sides apart.’
    • ‘As we stood there conversing in this manner, a crowd gathered around to listen.’
    • ‘The sporting entertainment kicked off early in the day as crowds gathered around large TV screens to watch the World Cup final.’
    • ‘Large crowds have gathered around him, and he begins to teach them.’
    • ‘I still remember a lover's quarrel last February when I'd walked desolately along Madison Avenue, only to come across a small crowd gathered around the store.’
    • ‘And judging from the crowds gathered around the trophy and the queues looping around the Brunel Plaza, the tour looks to be on target for success.’
    • ‘A lot of young girls had experienced terrible intimidation by the crowds gathered around the shop in the past.’
    • ‘Many in a strong crowd, who had gathered around the screens, were heard to remark it was all about politics rather than singing and the song.’
    • ‘Mike looked around at the assemblage gathered around him.’
    • ‘A crowd had gathered around one of the cottages in the town square.’
    • ‘A crowd gathered around one of the burned-out cars.’
    • ‘The grocery shop was next door to the sweet shop and when I got there I saw a crowd of children gathered around a television camera and some photographers.’
    • ‘A big crowd gathered around the freshly painted Red Cross Centre to join in the celebrations of the new facilities to the region.’
    • ‘And again, she told herself that as she entered the party and viewed the crowd of fans gathered around him.’
    congregate, convene, assemble, meet, collect, come together, get together, muster, rally, converge
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  • 2with object Bring together and take in from scattered places or sources.

    ‘information that we have gathered about people’
    • ‘He gathers information from a variety of sources such as newspapers, trade journals, and books on the latest topics and trends.’
    • ‘All information contained herein is gathered from sources we believe to be reliable.’
    • ‘Stars are not scattered randomly through space, they are gathered together into vast groups known as galaxies.’
    • ‘He scoured medical textbooks and science web sites to gather information on the sources of many human illnesses.’
    • ‘The main sources used to gather information were as follows.’
    • ‘We've gathered information from many sources and organized it to provide complete yet understandable information on decisions you now face.’
    • ‘Nevertheless here, and in the Source book, material previously scattered in archives is gathered together and ordered.’
    • ‘I gathered the information from books and other sources and created the pages.’
    • ‘All the information used for the article was gathered from public sources.’
    • ‘The growth of the internet has made it so easy for people both to gather information from diverse sources and to disseminate information to diverse recipients.’
    • ‘Student editors spend an enormous amount of time gathering every source cited by the author, then checking each one to make sure it supports what the author is saying.’
    • ‘Many of the Christian themes scattered throughout his writings are here gathered together.’
    • ‘The former is deathmatch with the expected setting choices, while the latter is a competition to gather items scattered around the maps.’
    • ‘‘For the fifth task, you must gather both flags and bring them back here,’ said Bradley.’
    • ‘Journalists will protect their confidential sources and will try to gather information with honest and legal means and will not conceal their occupation.’
    • ‘A compiled fist is data gathered from third-party public sources, such as government records, newspapers and directories.’
    • ‘Earlier literature was gathered from non-electronic sources by the authors.’
    • ‘I gathered a crew and brought in reinforcements from Brooklyn.’
    • ‘I tried to gather the suddenly scattered memories of court etiquette that had been drilled into me since I understood the concept of courtesy.’
    • ‘We've gathered reports from sources we trust - and we plan to add more.’
    collect, get together, put together, accumulate, amass, assemble, garner
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    1. 2.1gather something up Pick something up.
      ‘I gathered up the prescription and went to the door’
      • ‘She shrugged and gathered up the dirty instruments from my tray.’
      • ‘He gathered up some snow, creating a small hill.’
      • ‘Instead, Maya's world continued to crumble as she bent down to gather the hay scattered around, refusing to look at the couple now.’
      • ‘I gathered up a dozen and dropped them on the floor of the forest, far away from our reckless river, at a spot where the sun was shining through.’
      • ‘The place is secluded and beautiful and, as I gathered up some of the golf balls that we'd scattered, her dad and her brother zoomed off on their motorcycles.’
      • ‘For years thereafter, the comic book would dutifully be gathered up every evening and locked in a safe.’
      • ‘He gathered up the cards, shuffled them, and re-dealt.’
      • ‘My grandmother was not sure who might have gathered up the poet's clothes.’
      • ‘I had to gather it up and wash and bleach it to get the muddy paw prints out of the sheets.’
      • ‘She gathered up a rusty shovel and a pair of rakes and leaned them against a corner.’
      • ‘Muttering a curse, she put the other two boxes down before starting to gather the papers scattered all around the hallway and into the living room.’
      • ‘He gathered the paper scattered across the desk into a pile, and added it to the heap on the floor, frowning deeply.’
      • ‘He snapped a few pictures, gathered up the pipes, and returned home.’
      • ‘We gathered the cat back up and walked back to its apartment.’
      • ‘We scattered the fire and gathered all of our things.’
      • ‘All scraps and sawdust should be gathered up and disposed of properly off-site.’
      • ‘Charlotte reluctantly obeyed her Aunt as they gathered up her belongings, one by one, and packed them into suitcases and bags for the trip to North Carolina.’
      • ‘As soon as she reached the Nurse's Station, she gathered up her things and slung her purse over her shoulder, accidentally knocking over a coat stand by the exit.’
      • ‘She gathered up her pictures and tucked them in the pink notebook.’
      • ‘I gathered my things, brought them out, put them in my notebook, and put it in the filing cabinet.’
      • ‘Vaguely recognising a cup of coffee and a slice of cake, I gathered them up clumsily and joined the queue towards the cash-register.’
      • ‘She gathered up her things and hurried after him.’
      • ‘They gathered up the sheet they put on the ground and shoved it into the bundle they carried with them.’
    2. 2.2gather something in Harvest grain or other crops.
      ‘the harvest of wheat and barley had been gathered in’
      • ‘August to November heralds another period of fair weather, when the harvest is gathered in.’
      • ‘The abundance of apple sellers, though, harks back to the old days when all the crops would be gathered in and no fruit picked after this date for the puca, a supernatural being, would be busy spoiling unpicked fruit at Halloween.’
      • ‘To most Pagans Samhain is a sacred day - a time when the last harvests are gathered in before winter's arrival, and the time when family members who have passed away are remembered and honored.’
      collect, get together, put together, accumulate, amass, assemble, garner
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    3. 2.3no object Collect plants, fruits, etc., for food.
      ‘the Bushmen live by hunting and gathering’
      • ‘Because they need a lot of food, especially when the days shorten and sustenance becomes scarce, chickadees spend all autumn gathering and storing food.’
      • ‘After collecting several branches of large red berries, he gathered as many wedge fruit as he could carry from the nearby tree and walked back to their spot on the grass.’
      • ‘Following a difficult voyage, the sailors enjoyed some months on Tahiti gathering and cultivating breadfruit plants.’
      • ‘For example, bereaved relatives were not allowed to participate in food gathering until someone fed them the first wild rice or maple sugar of the season.’
      • ‘Women performed extensive plant gathering, including a wide variety of roots, berries, and seeds.’
      • ‘Based on situational requirements these handguns can be used for food gathering, and in some instances, defense against dangerous wild animals.’
      • ‘Who will feed those kids if they go to school and their parents are working in the dingiest of atmospheres to gather barely enough food to feed themselves?’
      • ‘Botanical knowledge is (and would have been in prehistory) greatest among the women who gather, collect, harvest, and process plant resources.’
      • ‘Apples and pears, when lying on the ground, could be gathered up as public fruit.’
      • ‘The summer months were the time when the villagers would collectively gather, grow and store firewood and food to help tide the long winter months.’
      • ‘The basic economy of hunting, fishing, and food gathering, and the settlement pattern that focused on lake margins and river valley locations, remained unchanged.’
      • ‘I even threw some tortilla chips on the ground, and the jays gathered up the chips as rapidly as they did the peanuts.’
      • ‘Life inside the reserve is harsh, as the Bushmen are banned from hunting, gathering and collecting firewood.’
      • ‘The diet of Inuit hunters in the Arctic is composed almost entirely of meat and fish, but most hunter-gatherers in other parts of the world obtain more food from gathering plants than from hunting animals.’
      • ‘It has changed from necessary food gathering to commercial harvest by way of eel traps.’
      • ‘After two quick rounds of food gathering, the students learn about the variety of animal species that live underground and glean insight into their fragile cave habitat.’
      • ‘Expect to see more extreme food gathering from these boys in future episodes.’
      • ‘Sixteen Irish people would be brought to an uninhabited island in the South Pacific and left there to survive on the food they could gather or kill for themselves.’
      • ‘In some areas of low population density hunting of wild pigs predominates, along with food gathering, hunting and collection of wild plants and animals.’
      • ‘This led to the creation of tools to aid them in their activities such as hunting and food gathering.’
      harvest, collect, reap, pick, pluck, garner, crop, glean
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    4. 2.4 Pull (someone) into one's arms.
      ‘she gathered the child in her arms’
      • ‘The two embrace and gather the child between them.’
      • ‘He smiled at her and then gathered her into an embrace holding her tightly with his muscular arms.’
      • ‘She reached out for him, with both hands outstretched, and he responded by standing, and gently pulling her to her feet, and gathering her into his arms.’
      • ‘In the next instant I felt him pulling me to him, gathering me into his arms.’
      • ‘I gathered up my little ones with just the clothes we were wearing and left for good, not looking back and not knowing our destiny.’
      • ‘He gathered me up into his arms and pulled me close into him.’
      • ‘He stretches over her onto his side of the bed and slides into it, pulling the covers up and gathering her into his arms.’
      • ‘Then we'd stopped and Wilson had gathered me into his arms, pulling me onto his lap as he claimed a swing.’
      clasp, clutch, take, pull, embrace, enfold, hold, hug, cuddle, squeeze
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  • 3with object Increase in (speed, force, etc.)

    ‘the destroyer gathered speed’
    • ‘The first section can be a bit slow and plodding but once the book gathers steam the second and third sections shine like well burnished steel rails.’
    • ‘As the glacier gathers speed on the steeper sides of the mountain, it contorts and breaks, forming gnarled canyons and crevices of blue ice which are both beautiful and lethal.’
    • ‘The club directly above them is gathering a worrying degree of momentum.’
    • ‘The effect of compounding is often used to show how much a relatively small investment can grow into a surprisingly large sum as the benefit of receiving interest on interest gathers pace over the years.’
    • ‘Marie gets out her map as the train gathers speed toward Elephant and Castle.’
    • ‘He gathered speed and hovered near the largest group of battling soldiers.’
    • ‘As the biotech and digital revolutions gather pace, so the cost of their primary product, knowledge, grows at an exponential rate.’
    • ‘The prog rock revival gathered pace last year when they toured Europe, South America and South East Asia.’
    • ‘Then it gathered speed and fell with an enormous crash.’
    • ‘As we gathered speed out of Mazatlan, the empty window frames offered a cooling breeze through the stuffy carriage, and I started to take stock of the characters travelling around us.’
    • ‘The result was the first in a series of ‘restructurings’ which would gather pace in the 1980s.’
    • ‘The battle for a second doctors' surgery in Westbury gathered pace this week, with residents being urged to take the fight to their local MP.’
    • ‘Inspired by prohibition in the US, his campaign soon gathered momentum and the Alliance became a political force to be reckoned with.’
    • ‘As my steep decline into grumpy old manhood gathers pace, I realise I no longer know how to manage even the simplest of contemporary transactions.’
    • ‘Colliding with shorter broken lines along the way, each element seems to gather energy and speed in a display of centrifugal force.’
    • ‘Smoke twisted from the jaws of the stack, the big wheel turned, slowly at first, gathering momentum and speed.’
    • ‘As Burt feared, the snowball started to roll and it was gathering pace.’
    • ‘The desire for speed gathered momentum in the twentieth century as America's strategic obligations broadened across the globe.’
    • ‘By the mid-1990s, a new strategy began to gather force.’
    • ‘The feminist movement of the 1980s was really gathering pace.’
    • ‘As this change gathers pace, many clubs - a legacy of the city's proud working-class past - are in trouble.’
    • ‘After a somewhat awkward first 15 min, the film gathers its pace and form, touching greatness on many levels, not least the performances and camera use.’
    • ‘When bad times hit, they lose faith, and, instead of giving a new product time to gather speed, they force it into a seemingly more certain, established market.’
    • ‘If you set a snowball off down a hill it will gather speed and momentum and that's what's happened here.’
    • ‘It appeared to gather speed and then veered off to her right and out of her view.’
    • ‘The whirlwind romance took a little time to gather speed - just a quarter of a century.’
    • ‘To do so would be a mistake, for the novel gathers force and what appears to be a woolly, romantic start turns out to be necessary and crafted.’
    • ‘One of Australia's most influential union leaders has called for the top income tax rate to be slashed to 30 cents in the dollar as the push for widespread tax reform gathers pace.’
    • ‘Slowly at first but then gathering pace the 4,100 tonne warship began to sink.’
    • ‘There were lots of reasons which gathered speed over the years but I still love him.’
    • ‘I braced myself as we sped up the hard shoulder for what seemed like an eternity before we'd gathered enough speed to join the motorway.’
    • ‘Manchester has pledged to blast away the menace of graffiti ‘once and for all’ as its 100-day clean-up gathers pace.’
    • ‘The result of these forces gathering momentum in the coming fight over policy, he says, will be an historic clash with massive implications for the coming decades.’
    • ‘The inter-county hurling and football championships have been gathering pace this past few weeks.’
    • ‘Developments off O'Connell Street are also gathering pace.’
    • ‘After pitching the ball gathered tremendous pace.’
    • ‘It couldn't come at a better time for us, as our improvement programme gathers pace.’
    • ‘The battle to secure a household recycling centre for Westbury gathered pace this week as senior councillors were urged to back the plan.’
    • ‘The quest to find one of Croydon's best known independent stores a new home gathered pace this week.’
    • ‘Moving under its own weight, the trolley gathered speed up to 40 mph and would have reached the men on the track at Tebay in minutes.’
    • ‘Until our campaign gathers speed - and we'd imagine we're in for a pretty long wait - we have an archery game for you to play today.’
  • 4with object Infer; understand.

    with clause ‘I gathered that they were old friends’
    • ‘The director, one gathers, wants a Paris Commune purified of all its difficult and perhaps unpleasant associations, a kind of utopian model to hold out to today's radical protesters.’
    • ‘Indeed, the genre blurring of the title is intended, one gathers, to apply not only to Manet and Flaubert but also to Reed's own text.’
    • ‘One gathers from their questions that this was a rare encounter.’
    • ‘You will have gathered by now that it would be an understatement to say he is no admirer of his subject.’
    understand, be given to understand, believe, be led to believe, think, conclude, come to the conclusion, deduce, infer, draw the inference, assume, surmise, fancy
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  • 5with object Summon up (a mental or physical attribute) for a purpose.

    ‘she lay gathering her thoughts together’
    ‘he gathered himself for a tremendous leap’
    • ‘Still, after a certain number of blows, I managed to gather myself to the degree that I knew what to do, which was to run.’
    • ‘That barren garden: where, presumably, he soon woke, wounded, worried, gathering himself together, and vowed never to return.’
    • ‘For years he had longed for his friendship with this woman to become something more, and having recently gathered up the nerve to court her, his wishes had been granted.’
    • ‘She gathered herself up and took a good look around.’
    • ‘I chuckled, but finally gathered myself and stopped laughing.’
    • ‘She could hear then breathing and gathering their courage.’
    • ‘Brian stopped at the red light, and gathered himself.’
    • ‘That was when she gathered her senses and noticed the mosaic floor beneath her.’
    • ‘Thankfully that was not the case as the lads once again gathered themselves and shot two late points to secure that all-important victory.’
    • ‘But they gathered themselves and came good at the last.’
    • ‘Somehow, they gathered themselves to beat Limerick in the first round of the qualifiers but the core discontent hadn't been addressed.’
    • ‘He stared for a moment, gathered himself mentally, and bowed his head.’
    • ‘He gathered himself up with as much dignity as he could muster before glaring at me.’
    • ‘He blinked a few times before he gathered himself.’
    • ‘In search of some peace, I gathered myself out of bed.’
    • ‘Feeling utterly stupid I gathered myself up from under the rubble and hobbled inelegantly to find a first aider.’
    • ‘When they've gathered themselves within striking range, we're dead.’
    • ‘John gathered himself up, trying to look important.’
    • ‘He gathered himself up and tried to perform first aid.’
    • ‘Finally, I gathered my courage and brought my gaze up to look at him.’
    summon, summon up, call together, bring together, assemble, convene, rally, round up
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    1. 5.1 Gain or recover (one's breath)
      ‘she paused to gather her breath and leaned against the wall puffing’
      • ‘He gathered his breath, thought about patting the vacant place next to him as an invitation for Rosa to sit, and tried to smile.’
      • ‘I try to imagine this, taking the opportunity to gather my breath before returning to the fray.’
      • ‘She took a few moments to gather enough breath to get anything audible out.’
      • ‘We'll take a bit of a break to gather our breath and then decide exactly when we should go to market.’
      • ‘It was rather tight and it was slightly hard to gather enough air to breathe, but I managed.’
      • ‘I suspect that, if I get to look back on it at the end of the decade, this will seem to have been a year for gathering breath and gaining strength, a pause in the unwritten plan.’
      • ‘She paused for a moment, as if gathering her breath for another onslaught of rapid-fire questions.’
      • ‘When she finally gathered her breath she smirked.’
      • ‘Refusing to panic, she gathered her breath and struggled to release her foot and leg.’
      • ‘The effort must have taken a lot out of him, but when he had gathered enough breath to speak, he did so with panting breaths.’
      • ‘Look, gather your breath and have a good rest and keep your chin up because the Court of Criminal Appeal have really done you proud.’
      • ‘She had just run from an inn on the outskirts of the town, and still gathered her breath from the way.’
      • ‘She paused a moment to gather breath as she felt dizzy from using her powers.’
      • ‘It must have the stamina to sing with only short pauses to gather breath, and its notes must be loud and clear.’
      • ‘No sooner had I closed my notebook on it pending a future revision and expansion than the wind slewed round, gathered breath, and commenced to blow.’
  • 6with object Draw and hold together (fabric or a part of a garment) by running thread through it.

    ‘the front is gathered at the waist’
    • ‘Pull the basting bobbin threads to gather the skirt.’
    • ‘Jersey and stretch linen are gathered faintly reminiscent of ancient Greece, yet wrapped around the body in hourglass silhouettes.’
    • ‘Affix rope, fringe or cording to an ordinary throw pillow or gathered slipcover skirt.’
    • ‘The fabric is gathered at the waist with a belt which is tied at the side.’
    • ‘The dress was a pale lime green, it had a wasp waist and the skirt was gathered the tiniest bit to give it some twirl.’
    • ‘The cami tied around my neck and scooped in the back, with some ruffly parts down the middle of the back (not overblown ruffles, just gathered fabric).’
    • ‘Pull up the threads to gather the fabric into pleats.’
    pleat, shirr, pucker, tuck, fold, corrugate, ruffle, crimp, crease, scrunch up
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noun

gathers
  • A part of a garment that is gathered.

    • ‘Ruffles, lace, pin tucks, gathers, folkloric embroidery or lettuce leaf edging are the perfect accent to more classic silhouettes or a pair of well-worn jeans.’
    • ‘This full-length jersey has a double shoulder/yoke with full-cut sleeves and underarm gusset, plus elastic ribbed gathers on edges of sleeves.’
    • ‘The garments would have soft volume with gathers, frills, layers and plenty of patterns, reads the forecast.’
    • ‘Buy a runner that is approximately 1 1/2 times the width of your window; the extra width will allow for soft, gentle gathers.’
    • ‘The soleplate comes to a point, making it easy to iron button bands and gathers.’
    • ‘Pear shaped women tend to have bigger bottoms so choose garments that have easing at the waistline with soft pleats and gathers.’
    • ‘In their Seam Displacement series, by applying an extraordinary cutting and tailoring technique, students were able to displace seams, pleats and gathers for a new look.’
    • ‘It ripples and furrows, drips in long trails, gathers in gritty, crusty patches.’
    • ‘The prismatic oil-stick scrawls are applied in intricate gathers, loose skeins and impenetrable tangles.’
    • ‘This can be accomplished at side seams, the center back seam, gathers, pleats, darts or a combination of the above.’
    • ‘Small tucks or soft gathers can accomplish the same thing.’
    • ‘This is how pattern drafters take a bust dart from the basic design and move it to the shoulder, then replace it with gathers rather than a dart.’
    • ‘For evening, the collection is a procession of gathers, plunging necklines and backs, irregular lines.’

Phrases

  • gather way

    • (of a ship) begin to move.

      ‘slowly the two tugs gathered way’
      • ‘It bellied in the wind, and the dark wave hissed loud at the keel, as she gathered way over the water.’
      • ‘The U-boat then gathered way and disappeared into the darkness.’
      • ‘Gradually the two battleships gathered way and proceeded to head down the river abreast of each other.’
      • ‘Then with a casual twist she pirouetted and now bows-on to the scene of impending carnage, quietly, almost innocently, began to gather way once more.’
      • ‘If the Alps were strongly manned, the movement for independence would gather way and the Gallic provinces decide the limits of their dominion at will.’
      • ‘The moment the engine is speeded up the clutch comes in, backward movement is checked and the car gathers way up the hill.’
      • ‘She gathered way quickly, went about like clockwork and stopped when the need arose as if she had power braking.’
      • ‘Shortly afterwards she began to move down the bank, bumped, gathered way and then bumped very heavily.’
      • ‘The boat slows, stops, and if the lever isn't pushed into neutral, she'll gather way astern.’
      • ‘At one time just before she commenced to gather way and draw off we were no more than a hundred yards from that towering cliff of ice which it looked as if our yardarms were going to touch.’

Origin

Old English gaderian, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch gaderen, also to together.

Pronunciation

gather

/ˈɡaðə/