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[groh-suh-ree, grohs-ree] /ˈgroʊ sə ri, ˈgroʊs ri/
noun, plural groceries.
Also called grocery store. a grocer's store.
Usually, groceries; especially British, grocery. food and other commodities sold by a grocer.
the business of a grocer.
Southwestern U.S.
  1. a saloon or bar.
  2. a liquor store.
Origin of grocery
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English grocerie < Old French grosserie. See gross, -ery Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for groceries
  • And then there's all the food that gets tossed from restaurants and groceries.
  • They got milk from a neighboring dairy and groceries from the food co-op.
  • Do your part to keep food safe when bagging groceries.
  • After he had gone things began to arrive at our house, groceries and such things.
  • Organized charity might, and indeed did, provide groceries on the instalment plan.
  • Fliers advertising baskets of matsutake or chanterelles fill the community bulletin boards at organic groceries across the state.
  • Once upon a time, groceries made the journey between stores and consumers' cupboards wearing little more than a paper bag.
  • To my amazement, they routinely offered to carry my groceries to the car.
  • More people are shopping, more businesses are opening, and nobody has to take buses anymore to get a bag of groceries.
  • groceries weren't always displayed on such orderly, open-access shelving.
British Dictionary definitions for groceries


plural noun
merchandise, esp foodstuffs, sold by a grocer


noun (pl) -ceries
the business or premises of a grocer
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for groceries

see grocery.



mid-15c., "goods sold by a grocer" (now groceries, 1630s), earlier the name of the Grocer's Hall in London (early 15c.), from Old French grosserie, from grossier (see grocer). Meaning "a grocer's shop" is 1828, American English.

GROCERY. A grocer's shop. This word is not in the English dictionaries except in the sense of grocer's ware, such as tea, sugar, spice, etc.; in which sense we also use it in the plural. [Bartlett, "Dictionary of Americanisms," 1859]
Self-service groceries were a novelty in 1913 when a Montana, U.S., firm copyrighted the word groceteria (with the ending from cafeteria used in an un-etymological sense) to name them. The term existed through the 1920s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for groceries



A meal or meals: I got hooked for the groceries (1940s+)

Related Terms

bring home the bacon

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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