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[ney-ber] /ˈneɪ bər/
a person who lives near another.
a person or thing that is near another.
one's fellow human being:
to be generous toward one's less fortunate neighbors.
a person who shows kindliness or helpfulness toward his or her fellow humans:
to be a neighbor to someone in distress.
(used as a term of address, especially as a friendly greeting to a stranger):
Tell me, neighbor, which way to town?
situated or living near another:
one of our neighbor nations.
verb (used with object)
to live or be situated near to; adjoin; border on.
to place or bring near.
verb (used without object)
to live or be situated nearby.
to associate with or as if with one's neighbors; be neighborly or friendly (often followed by with).
Also, especially British, neighbour.
Origin of neighbor
before 900; Middle English; Old English neahgebūr, nēahbūr (nēah nigh + (ge)būr farmer; see Boer, boor); akin to Dutch nabuur, German Nachbar, Old Norse nābūi
Related forms
neighborless, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for neighbours
  • And cars allow criminals to escape where before neighbours could run after and often catch them.
  • Could be a better way than showing boring holiday slides to the neighbours to share the memories.
  • Any single bird only gets its cues from its immediate neighbours and that is how the flock organizes itself.
  • The neurons excite some of their neighbours into firing in tandem, while suppressing others into silence.
  • All the vehicles in this model share their speed and position with their neighbours and this information filters downstream.
  • They notice and say too much, and the neighbours start talking.
  • Lands that were once neighbours become separated by a slowly widening valley.
  • During every round, players are given the opportunity to donate points to their neighbours.
  • Most of the time its angry neighbours have been conveniently weak and divided.
  • Unlike some of their neighbours, they have not raised interest rates.
Word Origin and History for neighbours



Old English neahgebur (West Saxon), nehebur (Anglian) "neighbor," from neah "near" (see nigh) + gebur "dweller," related to bur "dwelling" (see bower). Common Germanic compound (cf. Old Saxon nabur, Middle Dutch naghebuur, Dutch (na)bur, Old High German nahgibur, Middle High German nachgebur, German Nachbar). Good neighbor policy attested by 1937, but good neighbor with reference to U.S. policy toward Latin America was used by 1928 by Herbert Hoover.


1580s, from neighbor (n.). Related: Neighbored; neighboring.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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