Definition of gather in English:

gather

verb

  • 1[no object] Come together; assemble or accumulate:

    ‘as soon as a crowd gathered, the police came’
    • ‘Crowds also gathered around a television where footage of the annual school drills from the 1960s was being shown.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘A lot of young girls had experienced terrible intimidation by the crowds gathered around the shop in the past.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Large crowds have gathered around him, and he begins to teach them.’
    • ‘Philip's statement brought a ripple of laughter from the crowd of assembled contestants gathered around the archery range.’
    • ‘A crowd gathered around one of the burned-out cars.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Nearby, anxious crowds gathered around lists of injured posted on the walls of the hospital buildings.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘And again, she told herself that as she entered the party and viewed the crowd of fans gathered around him.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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 crowd of 300 demonstrators gathered around the jail, hurling firebombs, rockets and stones at the patrol.’
    • ‘A crowd had gathered around one of the cottages in the town square.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘It seems that a crowd of them had gathered around the quarrelling demonstrators, while the British cops attempted to keep the two sides apart.’
    • ‘Mike looked around at the assemblage gathered around him.’
    • ‘A big crowd gathered around the freshly painted Red Cross Centre to join in the celebrations of the new facilities to the region.’
    congregate, convene, assemble, meet, collect, come together, get together, muster, rally, converge
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  • 2[with object] Bring together and take in from scattered places or sources:

    ‘information that we have gathered about people’
    • ‘I gathered a crew and brought in reinforcements from Brooklyn.’
    • ‘I gathered the information from books and other sources and created the pages.’
    • ‘He gathers information from a variety of sources such as newspapers, trade journals, and books on the latest topics and trends.’
    • ‘Earlier literature was gathered from non-electronic sources by the authors.’
    • ‘‘For the fifth task, you must gather both flags and bring them back here,’ said Bradley.’
    • ‘The main sources used to gather information were as follows.’
    • ‘All information contained herein is gathered from sources we believe to be reliable.’
    • ‘All the information used for the article was gathered from public sources.’
    • ‘Stars are not scattered randomly through space, they are gathered together into vast groups known as galaxies.’
    • ‘We've gathered information from many sources and organized it to provide complete yet understandable information on decisions you now face.’
    • ‘A compiled fist is data gathered from third-party public sources, such as government records, newspapers and directories.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘I tried to gather the suddenly scattered memories of court etiquette that had been drilled into me since I understood the concept of courtesy.’
    • ‘The former is deathmatch with the expected setting choices, while the latter is a competition to gather items scattered around the maps.’
    • ‘Journalists will protect their confidential sources and will try to gather information with honest and legal means and will not conceal their occupation.’
    • ‘Many of the Christian themes scattered throughout his writings are here gathered together.’
    • ‘We've gathered reports from sources we trust - and we plan to add more.’
    • ‘Nevertheless here, and in the Source book, material previously scattered in archives is gathered together and ordered.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘He scoured medical textbooks and science web sites to gather information on the sources of many human illnesses.’
    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’
      • ‘I had to gather it up and wash and bleach it to get the muddy paw prints out of the sheets.’
      • ‘Vaguely recognising a cup of coffee and a slice of cake, I gathered them up clumsily and joined the queue towards the cash-register.’
      • ‘We gathered the cat back up and walked back to its apartment.’
    2. 2.2gather something in Harvest grain or other crops:
      ‘the harvest of wheat and barley had been 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.’
      • ‘August to November heralds another period of fair weather, when the harvest is gathered in.’
      collect, get together, put together, accumulate, amass, assemble, garner
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    3. 2.3[no 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.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘This led to the creation of tools to aid them in their activities such as hunting and food gathering.’
      • ‘Women performed extensive plant gathering, including a wide variety of roots, berries, and seeds.’
      • ‘The basic economy of hunting, fishing, and food gathering, and the settlement pattern that focused on lake margins and river valley locations, remained unchanged.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘It has changed from necessary food gathering to commercial harvest by way of eel traps.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Based on situational requirements these handguns can be used for food gathering, and in some instances, defense against dangerous wild animals.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Expect to see more extreme food gathering from these boys in future episodes.’
      • ‘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?’
      • ‘In some areas of low population density hunting of wild pigs predominates, along with food gathering, hunting and collection of wild plants and animals.’
      harvest, collect, reap, pick, pluck, garner, crop, glean
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  • 3[with object] Increase in (speed, force, etc.):

    ‘the destroyer gathered speed’
    • ‘Inspired by prohibition in the US, his campaign soon gathered momentum and the Alliance became a political force to be reckoned with.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘If you set a snowball off down a hill it will gather speed and momentum and that's what's happened here.’
    • ‘He gathered speed and hovered near the largest group of battling soldiers.’
    • ‘Colliding with shorter broken lines along the way, each element seems to gather energy and speed in a display of centrifugal force.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The whirlwind romance took a little time to gather speed - just a quarter of a century.’
    • ‘Then it gathered speed and fell with an enormous crash.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Smoke twisted from the jaws of the stack, the big wheel turned, slowly at first, gathering momentum and speed.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Marie gets out her map as the train gathers speed toward Elephant and Castle.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘By the mid-1990s, a new strategy began to gather force.’
    • ‘It appeared to gather speed and then veered off to her right and out of her view.’
    • ‘There were lots of reasons which gathered speed over the years but I still love him.’
    • ‘The desire for speed gathered momentum in the twentieth century as America's strategic obligations broadened across the globe.’
  • 4[with object] Infer; understand:

    [with clause] ‘I gathered that they were old friends’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    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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  • 5[with object] Summon up (a mental or physical attribute) for a purpose:

    ‘she lay gathering her thoughts together’
    ‘he gathered himself for a tremendous leap’
    • ‘Somehow, they gathered themselves to beat Limerick in the first round of the qualifiers but the core discontent hadn't been addressed.’
    • ‘In search of some peace, I gathered myself out of bed.’
    • ‘Finally, I gathered my courage and brought my gaze up to look at him.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘He gathered himself up and tried to perform first aid.’
    • ‘I chuckled, but finally gathered myself and stopped laughing.’
    • ‘She gathered herself up and took a good look around.’
    • ‘He stared for a moment, gathered himself mentally, and bowed his head.’
    • ‘Brian stopped at the red light, and gathered himself.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Thankfully that was not the case as the lads once again gathered themselves and shot two late points to secure that all-important victory.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘That was when she gathered her senses and noticed the mosaic floor beneath her.’
    • ‘When they've gathered themselves within striking range, we're dead.’
    • ‘But they gathered themselves and came good at the last.’
    • ‘She could hear then breathing and gathering their courage.’
    • ‘Feeling utterly stupid I gathered myself up from under the rubble and hobbled inelegantly to find a first aider.’
    • ‘That barren garden: where, presumably, he soon woke, wounded, worried, gathering himself together, and vowed never to return.’
    • ‘John gathered himself up, trying to look important.’
    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’
      • ‘We'll take a bit of a break to gather our breath and then decide exactly when we should go to market.’
      • ‘When she finally gathered her breath she smirked.’
      • ‘He gathered his breath, thought about patting the vacant place next to him as an invitation for Rosa to sit, and tried to smile.’
      • ‘Refusing to panic, she gathered her breath and struggled to release her foot and leg.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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 paused for a moment, as if gathering her breath for another onslaught of rapid-fire questions.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘It was rather tight and it was slightly hard to gather enough air to breathe, but I managed.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘She had just run from an inn on the outskirts of the town, and still gathered her breath from the way.’
      • ‘She took a few moments to gather enough breath to get anything audible out.’
      • ‘It must have the stamina to sing with only short pauses to gather breath, and its notes must be loud and clear.’
      • ‘She paused a moment to gather breath as she felt dizzy from using her powers.’
      • ‘I try to imagine this, taking the opportunity to gather my breath before returning to the fray.’
  • 6[with object] Pull (someone) into one's arms:

    ‘she gathered the child in her arms’
    • ‘In the next instant I felt him pulling me to him, gathering me 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.’
    • ‘The two embrace and gather the child between them.’
    • ‘He gathered me up into his arms and pulled me close into him.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘He smiled at her and then gathered her into an embrace holding her tightly with his muscular 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 stretches over her onto his side of the bed and slides into it, pulling the covers up and gathering her into his arms.’
    clasp, clutch, take, pull, embrace, enfold, hold, hug, cuddle, squeeze
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    1. 6.1 Pull (clothing) more tightly around one's body.
      • ‘Quickly, he pulled up his cloak which was hanging from his body and gathered it behind him.’
      • ‘I gather my shawl more tightly around me and revel in the combination of warm days and cool evenings.’
      • ‘The skirts are large and billowing, and Anna must constantly gather them around her body in defense against the strong wind.’
      • ‘She gathered the shawl tightly about her and set off down the deck.’
      • ‘Women in Oman wear very colorful dresses over loose-fitting pants that are gathered tightly at the ankles.’
  • 7[with object] Draw and hold together (fabric or a part of a garment) by running thread through it:

    ‘the front is gathered at the waist’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Pull the basting bobbin threads to gather the skirt.’
    • ‘Affix rope, fringe or cording to an ordinary throw pillow or gathered slipcover skirt.’
    • ‘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).’
    • ‘The fabric is gathered at the waist with a belt which is tied at the side.’
    • ‘Pull up the threads to gather the fabric into pleats.’
    • ‘Jersey and stretch linen are gathered faintly reminiscent of ancient Greece, yet wrapped around the body in hourglass silhouettes.’
    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.

    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The garments would have soft volume with gathers, frills, layers and plenty of patterns, reads the forecast.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The soleplate comes to a point, making it easy to iron button bands and gathers.’
    • ‘Buy a runner that is approximately 1 1/2 times the width of your window; the extra width will allow for soft, gentle gathers.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘For evening, the collection is a procession of gathers, plunging necklines and backs, irregular lines.’
    • ‘This full-length jersey has a double shoulder/yoke with full-cut sleeves and underarm gusset, plus elastic ribbed gathers on edges of sleeves.’
    • ‘This can be accomplished at side seams, the center back seam, gathers, pleats, darts or a combination of the above.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Pear shaped women tend to have bigger bottoms so choose garments that have easing at the waistline with soft pleats and gathers.’

Phrases

  • gather way

    • (of a ship) begin to move:

      ‘slowly the two tugs gathered way’
      • ‘She gathered way quickly, went about like clockwork and stopped when the need arose as if she had power braking.’
      • ‘The moment the engine is speeded up the clutch comes in, backward movement is checked and the car gathers way up the hill.’
      • ‘Shortly afterwards she began to move down the bank, bumped, gathered way and then bumped very heavily.’
      • ‘The U-boat then gathered way and disappeared into the darkness.’
      • ‘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 boat slows, stops, and if the lever isn't pushed into neutral, she'll gather way astern.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Gradually the two battleships gathered way and proceeded to head down the river abreast of each other.’
      • ‘It bellied in the wind, and the dark wave hissed loud at the keel, as she gathered way over the water.’
      • ‘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/