adjective or adverb
\ ə-ˈgāp How to pronounce agape (audio) also -ˈgap \

Definition of agape

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : wide open : gaping with mouth agape
2 : being in a state of wonder stood agape before the gothic cathedral


aga·​pe | \ ä-ˈgä-(ˌ)pā How to pronounce agape (audio) , ˈä-gə-ˌpā How to pronounce agape (audio) \

Definition of agape (Entry 2 of 2)

Synonyms for agape

Synonyms: Adjective or adverb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of agape in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective or adverb Mouth agape for focus, a boy named Eduardo Paz Lujan vigorously outlined his dotted circle three times, then lifted his marker and smiled at his work. oregonlive, 9 July 2022 Nonetheless, Coontz said, sometime in the 20th century, there arose a cultural ideal that the moment of a proposal should be surprising—picture a man presenting a ring to a woman whose mouth is agape and whose hands are on her cheeks. Joe Pinsker, The Atlantic, 6 July 2022 The young bowlers’ choreography is enough to leave their teammates’ mouths agape. Arelis R. Hernández, Washington Post, 20 June 2022 Fans lucky enough to get access mingle among the cars, mouths agape and phone cameras at the ready as mechanics prepare the open-wheel missiles for the three-hour battle ahead. Caleb Miller, Car and Driver, 1 June 2022 Of course, police also found Charles and Oliver, agape in the room at her side. Emily Longeretta, Variety, 13 May 2022 In another conversation, a stranger sent a message to a Russian mother saying her son was dead, alongside a photo showing a man's body in the dirt -- face grimacing and mouth agape. Arkansas Online, 16 Apr. 2022 Lupita Nyong’o was seated behind Smith; the agape attention in her face was all but audible. New York Times, 29 Mar. 2022 Dylan Cardwell clasped his hands behind his head, mouth agape on the bench. Tom Green |, al, 18 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'agape.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of agape

Adjective or adverb

1667, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1536, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for agape

Adjective or adverb

a- entry 1 + gape entry 1


borrowed from Late Latin agapē, borrowed from Greek agápē "brotherly love," back-formation from agapân "to regard with affection, be fond of, be contented (with)" or agapázein "to welcome warmly," perhaps from a base *aga-pā- "lavish protection, attention or affection (on)," literally, "protect greatly," going back to Indo-European *m̥ǵh2- "large, great" + *peh2- "protect" — more at much entry 1, fur entry 1

Learn More About agape

Dictionary Entries Near agape




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for agape

Last Updated

13 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Agape.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for agape


\ ə-ˈgāp How to pronounce agape (audio) \

Kids Definition of agape

: having the mouth open in wonder, surprise, or shock He stood there with mouth agape.

More from Merriam-Webster on agape

Nglish: Translation of agape for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about agape


Test Your Vocabulary

Commonly Confused Words Quiz

  • vector image of a face with thought expression
  • I went to the ______ store to buy a birthday card.
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!