One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A small group of people, with shared interests or other features in common, who spend time together and do not readily allow others to join them.
coterie, circle, inner circle, crowd, in-crowd, set, groupView synonyms
- ‘Strangers become friends, friends become cliques and cliques become vast drinking scenes.’
- ‘It was found that certain cliques of countries within the same geographic region, like Greece and Cyprus, are likely to vote similarly.’
- ‘The prestige and appeal of their manners radiated far beyond the exclusive social cliques of Damascus itself.’
- ‘Not surprisingly, the school is as bad as the city; there are numerous gangs and cliques.’
- ‘Cliques can be bad, when cliques start ganging up on other cliques, making mountains into molehills.’
- ‘In our close-knit cliques we gossip about a variety of topics even though we complain about the parents who do it.’
- ‘Its reputation in recent years has been that of a party dominated by small elite cliques.’
- ‘It must also avoid cultural cliques and the editor must be ‘free and untrammelled’ by any committee or board.’
- ‘There was never supposed to be any hierarchy in her classroom; no cliques were allowed.’
- ‘I hope that you all will get to know him and allow him to join our wonderful clique.’
- ‘At that time, he hadn't joined any of the cliques he could have, staying alone, talking to a few other guys at a minimum level.’
- ‘The West generally ignored its own cultural cliques, who were regarded as peripheral and of no consequence to political events.’
- ‘I had no idea that the smartest of the Indiana population had cliques.’
- ‘The tension is mostly created by Caz, Jules and Hen; their clique is the one the other girls most wish to join.’
- ‘I'm guessing that flying scene there resolves around individual cliques that communicate in private.’
- ‘Kellin always had these mixed up schemes to try and pull her into the popular clique.’
- ‘This procedure identified 13 distinct cliques over the course of the observation period.’
- ‘The hopes of the people have been dashed too many times to believe that they can rid the country of the ruling clique with the ballot.’
- ‘Interestingly, cliques generally became less integrated as the number of minorities rose.’
- ‘There he catered to couples, snazzy middle-aged divorced female cliques and peevish teenagers.’
Early 18th century: from French, from Old French cliquer ‘make a noise’; the modern sense is related to claque.
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