Someone who's elderly is very old. Your elderly neighbor might need help shoveling snow from her sidewalk and going grocery shopping each week.

When you talk about an elderly person, you might call him a "senior citizen" or an "older gentleman." We tend to think of people as elderly when they're quite aged and have started to become physically frail. You can also use the adjective for animals or even inanimate objects that are getting old: "That elderly oak tree is going to have to come down." The Old English root ealdorlic means "princely" or "excellent."

Definitions of elderly

adj advanced in years

elderly residents could remember the construction of the first skyscraper”
aged, older, senior
(used especially of persons) having lived for a relatively long time or attained a specific age

n people who are old collectively

young, youth
young people collectively
Type of:
age bracket, age group, cohort
a group of people having approximately the same age

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.