Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “family”

family

noun uk   /ˈfæm.əl.i/ us  

family noun (SOCIAL GROUP)

A1 [C or U + sing/pl verb] a group of people who are related to each other, such as a mother, a father, and their children: A new family has/have moved in next door. I come from a large family - I have three brothers and two sisters. He hasn't any family. He's American but his family (= relatives in the past) come/comes from Ireland. This film is good family entertainment (= something that can be enjoyed by parents and children together). How does family life (= being married, having children, etc.) suit you? B1 [C usually singular, U + sing/pl verb] the children of a family: Women shouldn't have to choose between career and family (= having children). Paul and Alison are hoping to start a family (= have children) soon. My dad died when we were small so my mum raised the family on her own. [C, + sing/pl verb] a pair of adult animals and their babies: We've got a family of squirrels living in our garden.

family noun (BIOLOGICAL GROUP)

[C] specialized biology a large group of related types of animal or plant: The lion is a member of the cat family.
(Definition of family from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of family?
Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Animal groupings, but you might be interested in these topics from the Animals generally topic area:

Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “family” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

from the word go

from the start of something

Word of the Day

Countability – grammar codes

by Dom Glennon​​,
November 26, 2014
Advices and informations Have you ever noticed strange codes in square brackets on entries in Cambridge Dictionaries Online and wondered what they mean? These are grammar codes, giving you a brief summary of how that word behaves grammatically. More information can be obtained by hovering your cursor over the code, and there’s

Read More 

ped-text verb

November 24, 2014
to text someone while walking I’m ped-texting, I’m looking down at my phone, 75 percent of the time.

Read More