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1. The quality or condition of being friends.
2. A friendly relationship: formed new friendships at camp.
3. Friendliness; good will: a policy of friendship toward other nations.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(ˈfrɛnd ʃɪp)

1. the state of being a friend; association as friends: to value a person's friendship.
2. a friendly relation or intimacy.
3. friendly feeling or disposition.
[before 900]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.




  1. An acquaintanceship, if all goes well, can linger in the memory like an appealing chord of music, while a friendship, or even a friendship that deteriorates into an enemyship, so to put it, is like a whole symphony, even if the music is frequently unacceptable, broken, loud, and in other ways painful to hear —William Saroyan
  2. Became like old friends, the kind who can’t leave each other on deathbeds —Thomas McGuane
  3. Comradeship … burned and flamed like dry straw on fire —Stephen Longstreet
  4. Early friends drop out, like milk teeth —Graham Greene
  5. Every man is like the company he won’t keep —Euripides

    An ironic twist on, “A man is known by the company he keeps” and, “Tell me the company you keep and I’ll tell you who you are.”

  6. Friendship ought to be a gratuitous joy, like the joys recorded by art or life —Simone Weil
  7. Friendship … should, like a well-stocked cellar, be … continually renewed —Samuel Johnson
  8. A friendship that like love is warm; a love like friendship steady —Thomas Moore
  9. Friendship with Cape was like climbing a ladder. You had to wait awhile on each rung before he invited you to climb the next —Robert Campbell
  10. Friends … slipping from his orbit like bees from a jaded flower —Beryl Markham
  11. He who helps a friend in woe is like a fur coat in the snow —Russian proverb
  12. I keep my friends as misers do their treasure —Pietro Aretino

    Aretino’s simile dating back to the sixteenth century, was followed by this explanation: “Because of all the things granted us by wisdom, none is greater or better than friendship.”

  13. Ill company is like a dog who dirts those most whom he loves best —Jonathan Swift
  14. In their friendship they were like two of a litter that can never play together without leaving traces of tooth and claw, wounding each other in the most sensitive places —Colette
  15. It is as foolish to make experiments upon the constancy of a friend, as upon the chastity of a wife —Samuel Johnson
  16. Life without a friend is like life without sun —Spanish proverb
  17. Life without a friend is death with a vengeance —Thomas Fuller
  18. Life without a friend is death without a witness —John Ray’s Proverbs
  19. The light of friendship is like the light of phosphorous, seen plainest when all around is dark —Robert Crowell
  20. Like old friends they wear well —Slogan, Meyer gloves
  21. The loss of a friend is like that of a limb; time may heal the anguish of the wound, but the loss cannot be repaired —Robert Southey
  22. My friendship [with Vita Sackwille-West] is over. Not with a quarrel, not with a bang, but as a ripe fruit falls —Virginia Woolf, March 11, 1935 diary entry


  23. A new friend is like new wine; you do not enjoy drinking it until it has matured —Ben Sira
  24. A new friend is a new wine —The Holy Bible/Apocrypha
  25. Their association together possessed a curiously unrelenting quality, like the union of partners in a business rather than the intimacy of friends —Anthony Powell
  26. Went through our friendships like epsom salts, draining us, no apologies, no regrets —Rosa Guy
  27. Without a friend the world is a wilderness —John Ray’s Proverbs
Similes Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1988 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.



(See also LOVE.)

close as the bark to the tree Intimate, close; interdependent, symbiotically related, mutually sustaining. The phrase is used particularly of the closeness between husbands and wives. Though occasionally used to indicate physical proximity, the expression usually carries implications that such is indicative of a spiritual or psychological intimacy or dependency.

She would stick as close to Abbot as the bark stuck to the tree. (Cotton Mather, The Wonders of the Invisible World, 1692)

The “bark and the tree” as symbolic of “husband and wife” was in print as early as the mid-16th century. The analogy assumes that spouses interrelate in the interdependent, mutually nourishing patterns characteristic of the relationship between a tree and its bark. See also go between the bark and the tree, MEDDLESOMENESS.

eat [someone’s] salt To share someone’s food and drink, to partake of someone’s hospitality. Among the ancient Greeks to eat another’s salt was to create a sacred bond of friendship between host and guest. No one who had eaten another’s salt would say anything against him or do him any harm. Salt, as it is used in this phrase, symbolizes hospitality, probably because it once was of considerable value, (cf. the etymology of salary). The first OED citation given for this expression is dated 1382.

hand in glove See CONSPIRACY.

hobnob To be chummy, familiar, or intimate with; also, hob and nob. This expression originated as hab-nab ‘have or have not,’ ‘give or take.’ Shakespeare employed this early sense in Twelfth Night:

He is a devil in private brawl…. Hob, nob, is his word, give’t or take’t. (III, iv)

The ‘give or take’ sense of this expression was subsequently extended to include the exchange of toasts as a sign of comradeship. Consequently, the phrase evolved its contemporary figurative meaning of being on friendly or familiar terms.

It cannot be her interest to hob and nob with Lord Fitzwilliam. (Lady Granville, Letters, 1828)

the mahogany The dining room table, as symbolic of sociability, conviviality, friendship, conversation, etc. This popular 19th-century British colloquial term usually appeared in phrases such as around the mahogany, over the mahogany, or with one’s feet under the mahogany.

I had hoped … to see you three gentlemen … with your legs under the mahogany in my humble parlour. (Charles Dickens, Master Humphrey’s Clock, 1840)

Currently mahogany is a colloquial term for a bar.

From the moment Mr. Primrose appeared behind his own mahogany and superseded the barmaid, he dominated everything. (N. Collins, Trinity Town, 1936)

rub shoulders To mingle or socialize; to hobnob. This expression is derived from the bumping and grazing of bodies against each other at social gatherings. The phrase quite often describes the mingling of persons of diverse background and social status at cocktail parties, political gatherings, and the like.

thick as thieves Intimate, familiar, friendly; close, tight. This expression is thought to derive from the French ils s’entendent comme larrons en foire ‘as thick as thieves at a fair,’ where thick means ‘crowded, densely arranged.’ When at a fair was dropped from the expression, the figurative jump to thick ‘close, intimate’ occurred; Theodore Hook used the truncated form in The Parson’s Daughter (1833):

She and my wife are as thick as thieves, as the proverb goes.

Pickpockets, cutpurses, and their kind frequented fairs and other large gatherings where the prospects of gain and escape were both high.

Picturesque Expressions: A Thematic Dictionary, 1st Edition. © 1980 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.friendship - the state of being friends (or friendly)friendship - the state of being friends (or friendly)
relationship - a state involving mutual dealings between people or parties or countries
blood brotherhood - the friendship characteristic of blood brothers
companionship, fellowship, society, company - the state of being with someone; "he missed their company"; "he enjoyed the society of his friends"
confidence, trust - a trustful relationship; "he took me into his confidence"; "he betrayed their trust"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.


1. attachment, relationship, bond, alliance, link, association, tie They struck up a close friendship.
3. closeness, love, regard, affection, intimacy, fondness, companionship, comradeship He really values your friendship.
"Friendship is a single soul dwelling in two bodies" [Aristotle]
"Friendship makes prosperity more brilliant, and lightens adversity by dividing and sharing it" [Cicero De Amicitia]
"Friendship admits of difference of character, as love does that of sex" [Joseph Roux Meditations of a Parish Priest]
Collins Thesaurus of the English Language – Complete and Unabridged 2nd Edition. 2002 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995, 2002


The American Heritage® Roget's Thesaurus. Copyright © 2013, 2014 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
صداقةصَدَاقَةصداقَهصَداقَه، عُلاقَه، موَدَّه
tình bạn


[ˈfrendʃɪp] Namistad f; (at school, work etc) → compañerismo m
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005


[ˈfrɛndʃɪp] namitié f
to build up a friendship → devenir amis(amies)
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005


nFreundschaft f
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007


[ˈfrɛndʃɪp] namicizia
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995


(frend) noun
1. someone who knows and likes another person very well. He is my best friend.
2. a person who acts in a friendly and generous way to people etc he or she does not know. a friend to animals.
ˈfriendless adjective
without friends. alone and friendless.
ˈfriendly adjective
kind and willing to make friends. She is very friendly to everybody.
ˈfriendship noun
1. the state of being friends. Friendship is a wonderful thing.
2. a particular relationship between two friends. Our friendship grew through the years.
make friends (with)
to start a friendly relationship; to become friends with someone. The child tried to make friends with the dog.
Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary © 2006-2013 K Dictionaries Ltd.


صَدَاقَة přátelství venskab Freundschaft φιλία amistad ystävyys amitié prijateljstvo amicizia 友情 우정 vriendschap vennskap przyjaźń amizade дружба vänskap มิตรภาพ dostluk tình bạn 友谊
Multilingual Translator © HarperCollins Publishers 2009


n amistad f
English-Spanish/Spanish-English Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
But we may go further, and affirm most truly, that it is a mere and miserable solitude to want true friends; without which the world is but a wilderness; and even in this sense also of solitude, whosoever in the frame of his nature and affections, is unfit for friendship, he taketh it of the beast, and not from humanity.
Will not true friends care for them equally whether he is alive or dead?
Elton, from the particulars detailed by her husband, thought it all extremely shabby, and very inferior to her own."Very little white satin, very few lace veils; a most pitiful business!Selina would stare when she heard of it."But, in spite of these deficiencies, the wishes, the hopes, the confidence, the predictions of the small band of true friends who witnessed the ceremony, were fully answered in the perfect happiness of the union.
Only think that we, your true friends, are round you, and that we pray for you all the time."
The White Hussars were "My dear true friends," "Fellow-soldiers glorious," and "Brothers inseparable." He would unburden himself by the hour on the glorious future that awaited the combined arms of England and Russia when their hearts and their territories should run side by side, and the great mission of civilising Asia should begin.
"Sir," replied Bazin, "the true friends of a Christian are those who aid him in working out his salvation, not those who hinder him in doing so."
"As a true friend, I have thought and thought again about your affair.
The impression produced by later events had not only intensified this feeling, but had presented the motives of that true friend under an entirely new point of view.
A prince is also respected when he is either a true friend or a downright enemy, that is to say, when, without any reservation, he declares himself in favour of one party against the other; which course will always be more advantageous than standing neutral; because if two of your powerful neighbours come to blows, they are of such a character that, if one of them conquers, you have either to fear him or not.
You a true friend! You have devoured all when you were standing godmother.
The firmness and constancy of a true friend is a circumstance so extremely delightful to persons in any kind of distress, that the distress itself, if it be only temporary, and admits of relief, is more than compensated by bringing this comfort with it.
"This is a true friend of mine--almost my greatest friend," he said to Vronsky.