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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
a herd of cows (=a group that are together somewhere)
▪ We had to wait while a farmer brought a herd of cows across the bridge.
▪ So the farm is well set with its 1000 acres of arable and large dairy herd.
▪ His operation, in terms of mechanization and dairy herd management, is one of the most capital-intensive in the province.
▪ Milk is the dominant product from livestock farms, and beef is usually a byproduct of the dairy herd.
▪ It had been a long hot day on the farm where I help my father with his large dairy herd.
▪ Its main role is as a terminal sire for suckler herds or as a beef sire for dairy herds.
▪ The land is used intensively mainly for dairy herds producing fresh milk.
▪ Dairying in particular occupied the second Earl's attention and his own dairy herds were a lifelong passion.
▪ In my view, it's the herd instinct.
▪ It seems to me that the Cabinet has an obsessively self-protective herd instinct which could be its undoing.
▪ But there is a herd instinct.
▪ But Viroli is not one simply to follow the herd.
follow the herd/crowd
▪ All they get is sad sheep for fans ... who just follow the crowd - try and be uncontroversial.
▪ But Viroli is not one simply to follow the herd.
▪ I follow the crowd back to a coffee shop.
▪ The only advice from Miss Doris was to follow the crowd.
▪ Most economists and investment advisers run in a herd.
▪ A herd of cattle or sheep is almost as easy to tend if it contains fifty animals as twenty-five.
▪ On patrol, game warden Jay Little Hawk discovers the bodies of a herd of mutilated deer.
▪ Stedman kept a herd of goats on the island opposite.
▪ The herd had once consisted of 150 animals.
▪ The Shetland's main role today is in multi-suckler herds, where their dual-purpose nature is invaluable.
▪ When they eventually withdrew they took with them four thousand slaves and great herds of cattle.
▪ Cowboys rounded up the steers and herded them north.
▪ Except in the case of the stallion deliberately herding his mares, this is not a question of dominance or bullying.
▪ Later yet we are herded down to the basement, told to crouch and to cover our heads with our arms.
▪ Observe people being herded like cattle through airports and theaters.
▪ Protesters were surrounded by police and herded on to school buses.
▪ Sometimes the Scouts took the initiative, and inextremis Sergeant Juron herded his squad hastily.
▪ The visitors were herded into two large halls, which were once the hotel ballroom and dining room.
▪ They are herded here and there, and I don't think she can cope with so many children.
▪ William blushed a bit, so I turned his shoulders toward the staircase and herded us all in that direction.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

Herd \Herd\ (h[~e]rd), a. Haired. [Obs.]


Herd \Herd\ (h[~e]rd), n. [OE. herd, heord, AS. heord; akin to OHG. herta, G. herde, Icel. hj["o]r[eth], Sw. hjord, Dan. hiord, Goth. ha['i]rda; cf. Skr. [,c]ardha troop, host.]

  1. A number of beasts assembled together; as, a herd of horses, oxen, cattle, camels, elephants, deer, or swine; a particular stock or family of cattle.

    The lowing herd wind slowly o'er the lea.

    Note: Herd is distinguished from flock, as being chiefly applied to the larger animals. A number of cattle, when driven to market, is called a drove.

  2. A crowd of low people; a rabble.

    But far more numerous was the herd of such Who think too little and who talk too much.

    You can never interest the common herd in the abstract question.

    Herd's grass (Bot.), one of several species of grass, highly esteemed for hay. See under Grass.


Herd \Herd\, v. t. To form or put into a herd.


Herd \Herd\, n. [OE. hirde, herde, heorde, AS. hirde, hyrde, heorde; akin to G. hirt, hirte, OHG. hirti, Icel. hir?ir, Sw. herde, Dan. hyrde, Goth. ha['i]rdeis. See 2d Herd.] One who herds or assembles domestic animals; a herdsman; -- much used in composition; as, a shepherd; a goatherd, and the like.


Herd \Herd\, v. i. [imp. & p. p. Herded; p. pr. & vb. n. Herding.] [See 2d Herd.]

  1. To unite or associate in a herd; to feed or run together, or in company; as, sheep herd on many hills.

  2. To associate; to ally one's self with, or place one's self among, a group or company.

    I'll herd among his friends, and seem One of the number.

  3. To act as a herdsman or a shepherd. [Scot.]

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

Old English heord "herd, flock," from Proto-Germanic *herdo- (cognates: Old Norse hjorð, Old High German herta, German Herde, Gothic hairda "herd"), from PIE *kerdh- "a row, group, herd" (cognates: Sanskrit śárdhah "herd, troop," Old Church Slavonic čreda "herd," Greek korthys "heap," Lithuanian kerdžius "shepherd"). Herd instinct in psychology is first recorded 1908.


mid-13c., “to watch over or herd (livestock);” of animals, “to gather in a herd, to form a flock,” late 14c., from herd (n.). Related: Herded; herding.


Etymology 1 n. 1 A number of domestic animals assembled together under the watch or ownership of a keeper. (from 11th c.) 2 Any collection of animals gathered or travelling in a company. (from 13th c.) 3 A crowd, a mass of people; now usually pejorative: a rabble. (from 15th c.) vb. 1 (context intransitive English) To unite or associate in a herd; to feed or run together, or in company. 2 (context intransitive English) To associate; to ally one's self with, or place one's self among, a group or company. Etymology 2

n. (context now rare English) Someone who keeps a group of domestic animals; a herdsman. vb. 1 (context intransitive Scotland English) To act as a herdsman or a shepherd. 2 (context transitive English) To form or put into a herd.

  1. n. a group of cattle or sheep or other domestic mammals all of the same kind that are herded by humans

  2. a group of wild animals of one species that remain together: antelope or elephants or seals or whales or zebra

  3. a crowd especially of ordinary or undistinguished persons or things; "his brilliance raised him above the ruck"; "the children resembled a fairy herd" [syn: ruck]

  1. v. cause to herd, drive, or crowd together; "We herded the children into a spare classroom" [syn: crowd]

  2. move together, like a herd

  3. keep, move, or drive animals; "Who will be herding the cattle when the cowboy dies?"


A herd is a social grouping of certain animals of the same species, either wild or domestic. The form of collective animal behavior associated with this is referred to as herding.

The term herd is generally applied to mammals, and most particularly to the grazing ungulates that classically display this behaviour. Different terms are used for similar groupings in other species; in the case of birds, for example, the word is flocking, but flock may also be used, in certain instances, for mammals, particularly sheep or goats. A group of quail is often referred to as a covey. Large groups of carnivores are usually called packs, and in nature a herd is classically subject to predation from pack hunters.

Special collective nouns may be used for particular taxa (for example a flock of geese, if not in flight, is sometimes called a gaggle) but for theoretical discussions of behavioural ecology, the generic term herd can be used for all such kinds of assemblage.

The word herd, as a noun, can also refer to one who controls, possesses and has care for such groups of animals when they are domesticated. Examples of herds in this sense include shepherds (who tend to sheep), goatherds (who tend to goats), cowherds (who tend cattle), and others.

Herd (disambiguation)

A herd is a large group of animals.

Herd may also refer to:

Herd (Tangents)

Herd is the musical alias of Jason Thomson from Corby, Northamptonshire. The Herd sound is inspired by the electronic band The Future Sound of London, especially their 1994 ambient masterpiece Lifeforms. Initially, Herd created music using Sony ACID and showcased these tracks on the private bit.torrent site After receiving positive feedback from members of the site he submitted some tracks to the American netlabel Future State of Rhythm (FSOR). This release Tangents 1 - 19 was the start of the Tangents project which currently sits at over 47 tracks. Nationwide radio exposure followed this release with support from Mary Anne Hobbs on BBC Radio One as well as a 35-minute mix on an up-and-coming new electronic music podcast entitled Electronic Explorations hosted by Rob Booth. Further netlabel releases followed with the Tangents ep on the Japanese netlabel Bumpfoot as well as Tangents 32 - 39 on the entity netlabel based in Belgium. This was followed by the release of Tangents 41 - 47 released in 2011 on The Future Sound of London's online label

Herd (surname)

Herd is a surname. Notable people with the surname include:

  • Chris Herd, Australian football player
  • David Herd (anthologist), Scottish anthologist
  • David Herd (footballer), Scottish former football player
  • Fred Herd, Scottish professional golfer from St Andrews
  • Richard Herd, American character actor in television and film
  • Sandy Herd, Scottish professional golfer from St Andrews
  • Stan Herd, American earthworks artist from Kansas

Fictional characters:

  • Gregory Herd, character appearing in Marvel Comics stories

Usage examples of "herd".

Being deep in Aberdeen territory, they had not wanted to be slowed down by herding the beef back to their town but had butchered them on the spot and packed the choice portions of the carcasses on their extra animals.

Any of the Aberdeen clannsmen who saw him must have thought him either daft or a slink, for there were no enemies, herding their booty, going in this direction.

Oceans would be full of the lost herds of whales, and aeroplankton would only be a memory.

Dolphins raced the ship, herd upon herd, their silver-white bodies aglisten in the sun.

Nefar and Akan and I sprang apart, forming a loose semicircle between the two flames like wary herd animals trapped in a blind.

The Huns, with their flocks and herds, their wives and children, their dependents and allies, were transported to the west of the Volga, and they boldly advanced to invade the country of the Alani, a pastoral people, who occupied, or wasted, an extensive tract of the deserts of Scythia.

In the end the king drew off to the scene of the fight, buried the dead except the alcaides, whose bodies were laid on mules to be interred at Malaga, and, gathering the scattered herds, drove them past the walls of Castellar by way of taunting the Christian foe.

We moved with the herds along the Algic Current, from the equator almost to the Arctic Circle.

Herding Andi toward the door, Gould first scowled, then smiled graciously.

Only a few isolated puffs of darkness remained inside the motor home, and the angelfish were methodically herding them outside.

To her, the dozing ankylosaur herd was a forest of immense stumpy legs and drooping tails that had no connection to each other.

She ran back into the ankylosaur herd, darting this way and that, seeking cover in the shadow of the lethargic dinosaurs.

Therefore she set herself to make known far and wide the sign of favour which the gods of Egypt had given me in the birth of an Apis among my herd, and, as I learned afterwards, even wrote or sent messages to old friends of hers about the court, who had been servants of Apries, to tell them what had come to pass and to vaunt my wealth and favour among the people.

They tell me that you are doing likewise, and now Apis has been born amongst your herds which Egypt will take for a sign.

Or it might have to do with the accursed Apis calf which had been born amongst my herd, that now would take the place of the old bull god they buried this day in the tomb of bulls.