Definition of crowd in US English:



  • 1A large number of people gathered together in a disorganized or unruly way.

    ‘a huge crowd gathered in the street outside’
    • ‘Large crowds have gathered to protest the decision.’
    • ‘All day the crowds had gathered, families and groups of friends picking their spots on the hill in front of the great marquee which housed the stage, or under its protecting canvas.’
    • ‘A huge crowd has gathered around the building, which has been cordoned off by the police.’
    • ‘She was about to hit her again but a crowd gathered around, staring at Anna's bleeding nose.’
    • ‘Apart from the crowds which gathered outside the magistrates court to catch a glimpse of the self-confessed killer, thousands more went to the disused and flooded quarry.’
    • ‘A huge crowd had gathered at the venue and a TV crew, which had also arrived, found it too noisy to shoot.’
    • ‘And over at the Haji Sophia - Istanbul's famous mosque - crowds were gathering to celebrate the end of Ramadan.’
    • ‘Huge crowds gathered to witness a host of snakes on St Patrick's Day, not all of them were non-venomous.’
    • ‘Each evening, the crowds gather to party, drink and dance.’
    • ‘It used to be that if there was a crowd of people gathered together and having a conversation, Jeff tended not to join in.’
    • ‘A huge crowd gathered from all over the area to honour their dead on this special occasion.’
    • ‘He looks out the front window to where crowds gathered to meet them every evening they came home from the stadium.’
    • ‘With each new action, meetings convened, crowds gathered, and messengers raced back and forth between the colonies.’
    • ‘On its evening newscast, state television showed ambulances rushing to the scene as huge crowds of people gathered outside the main gate of the mine.’
    • ‘A huge crowd had gathered in the town centre for the service.’
    • ‘Within an hour, a huge crowd had gathered to watch it enter the new harbour and berth at the quay.’
    • ‘I returned to meet up with them and found a crowd gathered and my brother's best friend screaming out for me.’
    • ‘The news was immediately announced to huge crowds gathered in the famous square in Rome.’
    • ‘Soldiers were positioned at strategic points in the city and at election rallies where huge crowds gathered.’
    • ‘A huge crowd gathered to cheer us on and salute our achievement and more than any other time it was greatly appreciated.’
    throng, horde, mob, rabble, large number, mass, multitude, host, army, herd, flock, drove, swarm, sea, stream, troupe, pack, press, crush, flood, collection, company, gathering, assembly, assemblage, array, congregation, convention, concourse
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    1. 1.1 An audience.
      ‘a crowd of 500 filled the synagogue’
      • ‘The game itself had some exciting moments but for the most part the small crowd of spectators had very little to cheer about.’
      • ‘A large crowd of spectators attended and thoroughly enjoyed horses and riders being put through their paces.’
      • ‘The opening quarter of the match was extremely disappointing, especially with a bumper crowd of 8,131 in attendance.’
      • ‘A capacity crowd of 10,000 spectators is expected on the last day of competition.’
      • ‘Watched by a crowd of onlookers three firefighters went into the water and used a canal side crane to hoist the shivering animal out.’
      • ‘Do you recall the feelings you experienced as a member of a crowd at a sporting event, a music concert, or a political rally?’
      • ‘The level of skill and commitment by both sides was warmly applauded by the large crowd of parents and spectators that showed up for the game.’
      • ‘More than 200 bands from across the planet gathered for the event, which saw a crowd of over 32,000 spectators.’
      • ‘The bands performed for a small yet appreciative crowd, and did not compromise on energy or passion.’
      • ‘It attracted a huge crowd of onlookers who were keen to see us set the record.’
      • ‘The match had attracted a crowd of more than 3,500-the biggest of the season.’
      • ‘The weather on the day was beautiful and a great crowd of spectators attended.’
      • ‘A crowd of over 10,000 attended an entertaining programme of games and song.’
      • ‘The day of safety demonstrations drew a large crowd of spectators.’
      • ‘A large crowd of spectators are expected, so get your tickets early.’
      • ‘Yesterday drew the largest crowd of the three-day event, 55,000 people descending on the site for the final day.’
      • ‘Guess who were causing the most congestion, with the biggest crowd of onlookers?’
      • ‘But it was the opening event that had drawn a healthy crowd of onlookers.’
      • ‘They too are expecting a capacity crowd on the night.’
      • ‘His motorcade arrived at the back of the hotel but a small crowd of onlookers spotted him.’
      audience, spectators, watchers, listeners, viewers, onlookers, patrons, house, gallery, stalls
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    2. 1.2informal, derogatory A group of people who are linked by a common interest or activity.
      ‘I've broken away from that whole junkie crowd’
      • ‘And when that time came the whole crowd roared and sang at full volume.’
      • ‘As the band came on to a squall of screams, the whole crowd surged to their feet - even where we were, up in the circle.’
      • ‘The programme that drew the glamour-struck crowd was the weakest link in the cultural show.’
      • ‘The museum consistently draws a crowd interested in connecting art and philosophy through lifelong learning.’
      • ‘The difference now is that the best of the younger crowd seem to regard the screen as more attractive.’
      • ‘An even more interesting thing is the crowd's reaction to the fight.’
      • ‘It's only when you retire to the loos and find a whole crowd smoking there that you realise that the flight has been delayed two hours.’
      • ‘And in Belgrade's cafés and clubs, the party crowd gathers every day, noisy and unashamedly happy.’
      • ‘The whole crowd were in tears laughing at him - myself and the other fifty people in the audience.’
      • ‘Conal did three encores and the whole crowd got to their feet, clapped, cheered and just refused to sit down.’
      set, group, band, circle, company, fraternity, clique, coterie
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    3. 1.3the crowd The mass or multitude of people, especially those considered to be drearily ordinary or anonymous.
      ‘you have to set yourself apart from the crowd’
      ‘free-thinkers who don't follow the crowd’
      ‘he'd become just another face in the crowd’
      • ‘As with most things, I'm not interested in following the crowd or doing the same things as other people.’
      • ‘All in all, this song is a piece of hip-hop that stands pretty far apart from the rest of the crowd.’
      • ‘Those trying to separate themselves from the crowd are inadvertently joining a large crowd of people who no one would want to be associated with in the first place.’
      • ‘I try to be humble in my martial arts, but in my movie career I can not be like that or I will get lost in the crowd.’
      • ‘Unless the manager reaches a level of excellence and effectiveness that sets him apart from the others whom he is managing, he will be merely a face in the crowd and not an achiever.’
      • ‘What is striking about the book is where it did not follow the crowd.’
      • ‘She must face the ghosts of her past, swallow her pride, and compete with a handful of less talented dancers for the opportunity to be just another pair of legs in the crowd.’
      • ‘For gaming this motherboard can keep up with the rest of the crowd without issue, putting out the numbers we expect it to.’
      • ‘In times marked by uncertainty and fear, it's easy to succumb to the comfort of the crowd.’
      • ‘How do you stand out from the crowd when the crowd is among the loudest, wildest concentrations of extrovert party animals on the face of the Earth?’
      • ‘You had the crowd behind you and everything!’
      majority, multitude, common people, populace, general public, mob, masses, riff-raff, proletariat, rank and file, the commonality, the hoi polloi, the canaille, the great unwashed
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    4. 1.4 A large number of things regarded collectively.
      ‘the crowd of tall buildings’
      • ‘The band doesn't really turn in a single bad song here, though a few stand especially tall above the crowd.’
      a lot, a great number, a large number, a great quantity, a large quantity, host, horde, mass, mountain, droves, swarm, army, legion, sea, abundance, profusion
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[with object]
  • 1(of a number of people) fill (a space) almost completely, leaving little or no room for movement.

    ‘the dance floor was crowded with revelers’
    • ‘We moved to rural Norfolk from Hong Kong, which at that point was the most crowded city in the world.’
    • ‘Four hundred other destitute families crowd a relief camp in a school a few kilometres up the road.’
    • ‘Still, flu sufferers are crowding emergency rooms all across the country.’
    • ‘In the center of the small bedroom is a double bed draped with handmade quilts, and the small group of women crowds the narrow spaces surrounding it.’
    • ‘It didn't hurt that large numbers of both buyers and sellers have crowded the field.’
    • ‘But a V-shaped column crowds the central area, and the heavy structure oppresses the space.’
    • ‘Tempting to send them off in the wrong direction I know, but the pavements are crowded enough round here as it is.’
    • ‘This was a very close and exciting game with a large number of supporters crowding the field to cheer on their teams.’
    • ‘The first couple of times, I dismissed it as being an accidental brush because the bar areas were crowded, as usual.’
    • ‘Jones has a cherubic face, a gappy smile and a loud voice, which probably comes in handy when he is shouting across crowded rooms.’
    • ‘Jeddah led them off into one of the side mazes of the market, a less crowded area.’
    • ‘A few head south for university, but find it hard to adjust to crowded cities and often return within weeks.’
    • ‘Two strides take a visitor into the only other room, where a bed, TV, couch and computer table crowd the compact space.’
    • ‘The bus was very crowded with a number of people standing as all the seats were occupied.’
    • ‘This woman's entire extended family visited for extended periods, crowding the room, and making it noisy and very hot.’
    • ‘By now the room is crowded, potential bidders making sure they have a good view of the auctioneer.’
    • ‘York has also the tourist network to deal with the massive influx in numbers crowding the city's hotels.’
    • ‘In the very crowded skies of north-east America, planes are restricted to very tightly controlled lanes.’
    • ‘Fire engines, police cars and ambulances crowded the area cordoned off to the public.’
    • ‘Instead of a healthy quota of 40 trees an acre, the region is crowded with as many as 568 an acre.’
    packed, congested, crushed, cramped, overcrowded, full, filled to capacity, full to bursting, overfull, overflowing, teeming, swarming, thronged, populous, overpopulated, overpeopled, busy
    throng, pack, jam, cram, fill, overfill, congest, pervade, occupy all of
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    1. 1.1crowd intono object (of a number of people) move into (a space, especially one that seems too small)
      ‘they crowded into the cockpit’
      • ‘We crowd into the living room, squashed up in our common friendship.’
      • ‘You can just imagine the wind howling round outside while everyone crowds into a stone cottage, a fire roaring in the grate and a group of friends simply playing together for the sheer fun of it.’
      • ‘Hundreds of people were crowding into the chapel.’
      • ‘We crowded into the theatre space and took a place on the concrete floor, crouching in the darkness in anticipation.’
      • ‘An estimated one million people crowded into the city centre for the closing weekend of the festival, which dates back to the 16th century.’
      • ‘Soldiers had to get their protective suits and respirators on within nine seconds, and then crowded into vehicles and underground shelters.’
      • ‘Not wanting to be completely outdone, the men hurried uneasily after her and crowded into the cramped space of the dank cave.’
      • ‘We giddily crowded into the elevator and pressed the button for the top floor.’
      • ‘Indeed it is a busy time for those in the running as a great deal of work has to be crowded into a very small space of time.’
      • ‘One of my earliest memories is of all the neighbours and family crowding into our living room to gaze at a six-inch square black and white fuzzy picture of the Queen being crowned.’
      • ‘Pediatricians are once again extremely busy this winter as patients with asthma symptoms - the most common disease among children - are crowding into respiratory clinics.’
      • ‘Around 300 farmers and hauliers crowded into the building.’
      • ‘Everyone parades onto the plane, crowding into 25 rows each only four seats wide. All the tourists promptly make themselves known by nicking the in-flight magazines as souvenirs.’
      • ‘Four of us were crowded into the back seat of my dad's 1927 Chevy.’
      • ‘Hundreds of thousands visit York every year: most of them crowding into Coney Street on Saturday afternoon.’
      • ‘Scores of people, including some from the dress circle, left their seats and crowded into the space at the front of the stage where they danced the night away.’
      • ‘Giant lanterns in the shapes of roosters, fish and dragons illuminated the night of February 23, with families crowding into the City God Temple to see the lanterns, solve the lantern puzzles and burn incense.’
      • ‘‘There are so many people crowding into this market these days, it's really important to do something special,’ says Pierre.’
      • ‘‘People from wealthier neighbourhoods have benefited most from the expansion of higher education - they are the ones who are crowding into universities,’ said an independent report.’
      • ‘There are 30 men crowding into houses in residential neighborhoods.’
      surge, push one's way, shove, push, thrust forward, jostle, elbow, elbow one's way, shoulder, nudge, bulldoze
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    2. 1.2crowd aroundno object (of a group of people) form a tightly packed mass around (someone or something)
      ‘photographers crowded around him’
      • ‘When the referee made a decision there was no crowding round him, no voices yelling in his face.’
      • ‘Before I knew it I was sitting out in the hallway with half the family crowded round, trying to help stop the blood flow that simply wouldn't clot.’
      • ‘Although Paul loves cooking, he doesn't like the idea of a separate dining-room, which he feels detracts from the social aspect of preparing food, and likes to have his friends crowd round the large table.’
      • ‘People always crowd round afterwards, wanting to know more.’
      • ‘They crowded round and watched the water boil for hours, and afterward they poured the water into a glass.’
      • ‘People crowded round the bar frantically shouting their orders over the noise of the band.’
      • ‘People were crowding round her but it was Stuart who ran to her aid.’
      • ‘Loads of people crowded round him to watch him demonstrate his fireproof coating by setting fire to his hands.’
      • ‘‘We had a really good turnout, with lots of people crowding round the cars and getting some ideas,’ she said.’
      • ‘The idol was, and is, annually dragged forth in procession on a monstrous car, and as masses of excited pilgrims crowded round to drag or accompany it, accidents occurred.’
      • ‘Yes, she'll miss the glamour, the gaggle of schoolgirls crowding round for autographs.’
      • ‘I followed her into the back room and there were about 50 guys crowded round a small black & white TV.’
      • ‘Or maybe you vividly remember watching the occasion unfold in monochrome as you crowded round a black and white TV with family and friends.’
      • ‘During the interval, the audience trickles out of the capsule into the vast darkness of the encompassing Exchange hall, crowding round the various bars for drinks.’
      • ‘The bar where the band was playing emptied instantly and we all crowded round the big screen in the other bar.’
      • ‘If you think about World Cups, you get women and kids crowding round the TV to watch Scotland who wouldn't usually be interested.’
      • ‘There were shouts of excitement that had us all running and crowding round.’
      • ‘I guess that was so they didn't disturb the scrum of journalist crowded round a wide-screen telly watching the football.’
      • ‘There was silence for a few seconds and then everyone crowded round.’
      • ‘The crucial thing is to stick to our jobs and not all crowd round the first problem that comes in.’
      cluster, gather, flock, swarm, throng, huddle, assemble, concentrate, congregate, come together, collect, amass, accumulate
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  • 2Move too close to (someone)

    ‘don't crowd her, she needs air’
    • ‘He tried crowding him and using his strength and that had no effect.’
    • ‘Tell her that you want to be her friend, but she crowds you too much.’
    • ‘Because he's a cat everyone intrinsically likes him, but he doesn't really like people crowding him.’
    • ‘When I return to the flat from my clinic I crouch down and the dogs crowd me, shoving and licking my face.’
    • ‘But when I think that we might have to move, the negatives crowd in and overwhelm me.’
    • ‘Though we were separated by a large teak desk, Bur still managed to crowd me in somehow.’
    • ‘A rush ensues while I bag everything as the next customer usually starts crowding me.’
    • ‘Avoid crowding your planted pots close together, as your plants need good air circulation and growing room.’
    • ‘The man simply moved closer, crowding her until she was backed up against the wall.’
    • ‘At break I saw her and smiled but didn't go over as I was afraid of crowding her.’
    • ‘Dara and Mac don't need me crowding their space when they return from their honeymoon.’
    • ‘It is difficult to describe. I feel as though I have a whole pile of tasks and chores crowding me.’
    • ‘We were getting on really well, but our conversation had got really heavy and I didn't know whether I was crowding her or not.’
    • ‘It stands to reason that when you're waiting to use a cash machine, try not to crowd the person who's already using it.’
    • ‘I was partly awakened by noise and a couple of guys crowding me as they sat on the edge of my cot.’
    • ‘She had chosen not to live in California so she could be her own person and avoid crowding him.’
    • ‘He walked over and sat beside her with enough room that he wasn't crowding her.’
    • ‘They'll crowd so close to the wagon that sometimes you've got to ask them to step back.’
    • ‘I was use to working in the warehouse where there was lots of room and you were never crowded.’
    1. 2.1Baseball (of a batter) stand very close to (the plate) when batting.
    2. 2.2crowd in onno object Overwhelm and preoccupy (someone)
      ‘as demands crowd in on you it becomes difficult to keep things in perspective’
      • ‘Brandon had longed for solitude for the last four weeks - but now he had been finally left alone, all his thoughts were racing, crowding in on him, emotions that he couldn't handle.’
      • ‘There's no way that the players or management staff, or those who still man the offices and shop, are immune to the confusion crowding in on their place of work.’
      • ‘The heat of asphalt, the lunacy of traffic and the depravity of narrow alleys crowd in on the characters.’
      • ‘Support drifts away into nostalgia and conspiracy theories as other parties crowd in on key policies’
      • ‘The artist making the colourful beads and ornaments from polymer clay has people crowding in on her so much that it looks as if the table might tip.’
      • ‘She sat with her hands on the steering wheel as the implications of what she'd heard crowded in on her.’
      • ‘The demands of his latest job have crowded in on his social life to the extent he has still to find time for a fishing trip to Inverness.’
  • 3crowd someone/something outExclude someone or something by taking their place.

    ‘grass invading the canyon has crowded out native plants’
    • ‘There are the people who let piles of paper and garbage crowd them out of their houses.’
    • ‘American scientists and researchers, frustrated that the internet's popularity has crowded them out and slowed serious research, are building their own new information superhighway.’
    • ‘Lymphocytes increase in number until normal marrow cells are crowded out.’
    • ‘Also, since rows are planted closer together, cotton crowds the weeds out, reducing the need for midseason herbicide applications.’
    • ‘Again, other music crowded it out, to the point where this recording amounts to a revival.’
    • ‘The tendency of men to intimidate women drivers by constant honking and crowding them out needs to be dealt with strictly.’
    • ‘He had a refined judgement in poetry, and at one time had a fine library of English literature, before his mathematical collection crowded it out.’
    • ‘However, this vision will not be achieved if public health targets are crowded out by hospital waiting lists.’
    • ‘Unfortunately, the bit-players tend to crowd him out of the narrative.’
    • ‘However this game can be tricky at the best of times and lo an behold the favourite was crowded out at this stage being put back to near last.’
    • ‘Countries like Sudan are crowded out of the sugar market in Egypt and Saudi Arabia.’
    • ‘The building was tall and thin, and in subsequent decades it was crowded out by gargantuan neighbors.’
    • ‘The reason you have such a low lamprey count is the leeches crowded them out.’
    oust, overthrow, remove, topple, unseat, depose, dethrone, eject, dispel
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  • stand out from the crowd

    • Be clearly better than or noticeably different from ordinary people or things.

      ‘to be successful we need to stand out from the crowd’
      • ‘The actress certainly stood out from the crowd as she arrived in a silver belted jacket.’
      • ‘Our willingness to be different and stand out from the crowd works to our good.’
      • ‘A letter itself is not always sufficient—particularly if you want to stand out from the crowd and make your voice heard.’
      • ‘We don't like to stand out from the crowd so we're not very good at promoting ourselves.’
      • ‘These women have overcome many obstacles to make their business stand out from the crowd.’
      • ‘The movie is competently constructed and decently acted but it doesn't do much different to make it stand out from the crowd.’
      • ‘The vocals are delivered in thick accents, making the band stand out from the crowd.’
      • ‘People want their wedding to stand out from the crowd.’
      • ‘I want to see a band that has the talent to play their instruments and a singer with a unique voice that stands out from the crowd.’
      • ‘Only self-discipline, perseverance, and the willingness to work hard can make a person stand out from the crowd and achieve remarkable results.’
      • ‘A game needs something special to stand out from the crowd.’


Old English crūdan ‘press, hasten’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch kruien ‘push in a wheelbarrow’. In Middle English the senses ‘move by pushing’ and ‘push one's way’ arose, leading to the sense ‘congregate’, and hence (mid 16th century) to the noun.