n. & v.
n. 1 (usu. as pl.) a persons composing a community, tribe, race, nation, etc. (the English people; a warlike people; the peoples of the Commonwealth). b a group of persons of a usu. specified kind (the chosen people; these people here; right-thinking people). 2 (prec. by the; treated as pl.) a the mass of people in a country etc. not having special rank or position. b these considered as an electorate (the people will reject it). 3 parents or other relatives (my people are French). 4 a subjects, armed followers, a retinue, etc. b a congregation of a parish priest etc. 5 persons in general (people do not like rudeness).
v.tr. (usu. foll. by with) 1 fill with people, animals, etc.; populate. 2 (esp. as peopled adj.) inhabit; occupy; fill (thickly peopled). people's democracy a political system, esp. in E. Europe, with power regarded as invested in the people.
[ ME f. AF poeple, people, OF pople, peuple, f. L populus ]