Word of the Day: Gather


gath-er / găth-ər



1. the act of drawing or bringing together

Curly knew the story of how in one drive he had made a gather of outlaws that had brought fame to him.

From “Crooked Trails and Straight” by William MacLeod Raine, 1871 – 1954        


2. something that has been brought together

Since knits tend to get really tight and fitted across the bodice, the gathers in the shoulders give a little extra space in the bodice without looking frumpy.

 www.etsy.com/ca/listing/241245399/gathers-in-the-shoulders-and-knit-sewing, accessed November 22, 2021



1. to bring together

Learning how to gather fabric is a basic sewing technique, and essential for garment sewing, but it can be challenging when you are first learning. 

www.thegirlinspired.com/sewing-basics-gathering, January 5, 2013


2. to collect

Happiness is like manna; it is to be gathered in grains, and enjoyed every day.

Tryon Edwards, 1809 – 1894


2. to assemble a group

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. 

Matthew 18:20 (KJB)


3. to harvest

He who sows courtesy, reaps friendship; he who plants kindness, gathers love.

Saint Basil the Great 329-379


4. to pick up

Salt split is never all gathered

Spanish Proverb


5. to attract; to cause to draw near

A raccoon that spent much of Tuesday climbing a skyscraper in St. Paul, Minn., has gathered a crowd of anxious followers from around the world. 

The Associated Press, “Raccoon scales Minnesota office tower, leaving public in suspense”, June 12, 2018


6. to pull close

Outside the door he squatted down and gathered the blanket ends about his knees. 

From “The Pearl” by John Steinbeck, 1902 – 1968


7. to search for and collect food from the wild

He who would gather honey must brave the sting of bees.

Dutch Proverb


8. to infer from what someone has said; to conclude by reasoning based on evidence

He could not gather what was vexing her, but it was impossible to him to feel otherwise than that she was the prettiest thing in the world, and that if he could have his way, nothing should ever vex her any more.

From “Adam Bede” by George Eliot, 1819 – 1880


9. to summon or call upon

Take a moment to gather your thoughts about your situation and ask, “What would Love do?” 

Doreen Virtue, 1958 –


10. to accumulate slowly, over time

Dishonest money dwindles away, but whoever gathers money little by little makes it grow. 

Proverb 13:11 (NIV)


11. to slowly build up; to increase

The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection.

Thomas Paine, 1737 – 1809


12. to contract, making folds, creases or wrinkles

It is no wonder that Erling the Bold gathered his brow into an ominous frown, pressed his lips together, tossed his locks impatiently while he thought on. 

From “Erling the Bold” by R. M. Ballantyne, 1825 – 1894


13. in glass blowing, to use a tool to accumulate molten glass

A mass of glass was gathered and blown into a globe at the end of the blowing iron and marvered to a conical shape.

Arun Kumar Varshneya, “Industrial Glass”, ‘Encyclopedia Britannica’, https://www.britannica.com/topic/glass-properties-composition-and-industrial-production-234890. accessed 22 November 2021



From the Anglo-Saxon verb gaderian/gadrian (bring together, collect, gather) through the Middle English verb gaderen/gethuren of the same meaning.

Thank you to Allen Ward for providing this etymology.