adjective sud·den \ˈsə-dən\

: happening, coming, or done very quickly in a way that is usually not expected

Full Definition of SUDDEN

a :  happening or coming unexpectedly <a sudden shower>
b :  changing angle or character all at once <a sudden drop in the ocean bottom>
:  marked by or manifesting abruptness or haste <a sudden departure>
:  made or brought about in a short time :  prompt
sud·den·ly adverb
sud·den·ness \ˈsə-dən-(n)əs\ noun

Examples of SUDDEN

  1. a sudden change in temperature
  2. Sudden fame can be difficult to deal with.
  3. She had a sudden urge to be outside.
  4. His death was very sudden.
  5. a sudden turn in the road
  6. I was surprised by her sudden decision to quit.
  7. The director's sudden departure leaves the organization's future uncertain.

Origin of SUDDEN

Middle English sodain, from Anglo-French sudain, from Latin subitaneus, from subitus sudden, from past participle of subire to come up, from sub- up + ire to go — more at sub-, issue
First Known Use: 14th century

Synonym Discussion of SUDDEN

precipitate, headlong, abrupt, impetuous, sudden mean showing undue haste or unexpectedness. precipitate stresses lack of due deliberation and implies prematureness of action <the army's precipitate withdrawal>. headlong stresses rashness and lack of forethought <a headlong flight from arrest>. abrupt stresses curtness and a lack of warning or ceremony <an abrupt refusal>. impetuous stresses extreme impatience or impulsiveness <an impetuous lover proposing marriage>. sudden stresses unexpectedness and sharpness or violence of action <flew into a sudden rage>.



Definition of SUDDEN

:  an unexpected occurrence :  emergency
all of a sudden also on a sudden
:  sooner than was expected :  at once

First Known Use of SUDDEN

SUDDEN Defined for Kids


adjective sud·den \ˈsə-dən\

Definition of SUDDEN for Kids

:  happening or coming quickly and unexpectedly <… she was startled by a sudden outburst of noise. — Robert C. O'Brien, Rats of NIMH>
:  met with unexpectedly <We came to a sudden turn in the road.>
:  hasty 2 <He made a sudden decision.>
sud·den·ly adverb
sud·den·ness noun
all of a sudden
:  sooner than was expected :  suddenly <All of a sudden I saw him.>


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