elder Meaning in the Cambridge English Dictionary Cambridge dictionaries logo

Meaning of “elder” in the English Dictionary

"elder" in British English

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eldernoun [C]

uk   /ˈel.dər/  us   /-dɚ/

elderadjective

uk   /ˈel.dər/  us   /-dɚ/
elder sister/brother/son/daughter

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B1 a ​sister/​brother/​son/​daughter who is ​older than the other sister(s), brother(s), etc.
the elder B2 the ​olderperson of two ​people: Of the two ​brothers Harvey is the elder. used after someone's ​name to show that they are the ​older of two ​people who have the same ​name, ​especially a ​father and ​son: William Pitt the elder
(Definition of elder from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

"elder" in American English

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eldernoun [C]

 us   /ˈel·dər/
an ​olderperson, esp. one who ​deservesrespect: You should ​listen to ​your elders. An elder is also an ​official in ​particularreligiousgroups.

elderadjective [not gradable]

 us   /ˈel·dər/
(of a ​familymember) ​older: an elder ​brother/​sister
(Definition of elder from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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“elder” in British English

“elder” in American English

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