The verb "surround" is used when an object or a person has things or people all around it.


  • Water surrounds the island he’s on. He’ll stay there until someone rescues him.
  • The police surrounded the car and then arrested the driver.
  • Some of the suburbs that surround Chicago have very expensive housing.
  • Roger and Kim are surrounded by homes that have been torn down and rebuilt as much larger homes.

Sometimes this word is used when people are brought into close contact with each other:

  • The CEO of the company surrounds himself with some of the brightest and most talented people in the industry.
  • Maria was surrounded by friends and family during her graduation party. (The passive voice is often used with "surround.")
  • Kevin was surrounded by friends and family during his mother’s funeral.

You can use the word "surrounding" as an adjective:

  • The Twin Cities and the surrounding areas are under a flood watch. (flood watch = water is rising in lakes, rivers, streams, and creeks following heavy rain.)

Click here to learn more words.

Published on June 20, 2014.