ap·​plaud | \ə-ˈplȯd \
applauded; applauding; applauds

Definition of applaud 

intransitive verb

: to express approval especially by clapping the hands The audience applauded at the end of the performance.

transitive verb

1 : to express approval of : praise I applaud her efforts to lose weight.

2 : to show approval of especially by clapping the hands Spectators applauded the team.

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Other Words from applaud

applaudable \-​ˈplȯ-​də-​bəl \ adjective
applaudably \-​blē \ adverb
applauder noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for applaud


acclaim, accredit, cheer, crack up, hail, laud, praise, salute, tout


knock, pan, slam

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Examples of applaud in a Sentence

Everyone applauded the graduates as they entered the auditorium. The audience stood and applauded her performance. We applaud the decision to lower taxes. I applaud their efforts to clean up the city, but they must do more. Rather than being criticized for her honesty, she should be applauded for it.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Democrats and liberals applaud him for protecting Mr. Mueller by recusing himself from the probe, and for defending his department and its personnel. Judith Miller, WSJ, "Jeff Sessions’s Exit Interview," 8 Nov. 2018 My religious community applauded me for standing against Nassar and his enablers while, in the same breath, condemned me for speaking against religious institutions that mishandled abuse. Rachael Denhollander, Vox, "I’m a sexual assault survivor. And a conservative. The Kavanaugh hearings were excruciating.," 15 Oct. 2018 On the other hand, my academic family applauded my writing. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "Old In Art School," 20 June 2018 Yet Caucasians regularly applaud him for his interminably boring, angst-ridden films. Michael Harriot, The Root, "Hate the Player, Not the Game: On Loving the Art of R. Kelly, Kanye and Cosby," 7 May 2018 During New York Fashion Week in September, Ralph Lauren celebrated his 50th anniversary in the fashion business—with friends like Oprah, Hillary Clinton, Steven Spielberg, and Tracee Ellis Ross turning out to applaud his success. Cynthia Drescher, Condé Nast Traveler, "Oceania Cruises Celebrates Ralph Lauren Partnership with 'Re-Mastered' Suites," 10 Oct. 2018 In an age where the standard procedure for sports leagues is to expand, the Tour’s self-awareness ought to be applauded. Daniel Rapaport,, "FORE Questions: Breaking Down the New PGA Tour Schedule," 12 July 2018 And if no single breakaway star emerged from the roughly 40 shows and presentations rolled out over three days, there was plenty to applaud. New York Times, "New York Men’s Fashion Week: The Mixtape," 11 July 2018 After making their initial entrance, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex released hands to applaud a small group of performers. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Are Back to Holding Hands at Royal Events," 5 July 2018

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

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First Known Use of applaud

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for applaud

Middle English, from Middle French or Latin; Middle French aplaudir, from Latin applaudere, from ad- + plaudere to applaud

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Dictionary Entries near applaud

Appian Way







Statistics for applaud

Last Updated

5 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for applaud

The first known use of applaud was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for applaud



English Language Learners Definition of applaud

: to strike the hands together over and over to show approval or praise

: to express approval of or support for (something or someone)


ap·​plaud | \ə-ˈplȯd \
applauded; applauding

Kids Definition of applaud

1 : to show approval especially by clapping the hands

2 : praise entry 1 sense 1 We applaud your efforts.

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More from Merriam-Webster on applaud

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with applaud

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for applaud

Spanish Central: Translation of applaud

Nglish: Translation of applaud for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of applaud for Arabic Speakers

Comments on applaud

What made you want to look up applaud? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a knickknack or trinket

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