ap·​plaud | \ ə-ˈplȯd How to pronounce applaud (audio) \
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 \ ə-​ˈplȯ-​də-​bəl How to pronounce applaudable (audio) \ adjective
applaudably \ ə-​ˈplȯ-​də-​blē How to pronounce applaudably (audio) \ adverb
applauder noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for applaud



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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 Alaska’s governor and congressional leaders applaud the removal of protections. Bjorn Dihle, Outdoor Life, "USDA Strips Tongass Roadless-Rule Protections, Favoring Subsidized Logging Interests Over Hunters, Anglers, and Wildlife," 28 Oct. 2020 Although Minnesota prosecutors are unhappy about the change, Minnesotans should applaud a recent judicial decision to allow cameras and audio in the courtroom during the George Floyd murder trial. Editorial Board Star Tribune, Star Tribune, "A victory for courtroom access in George Floyd case," 17 Nov. 2020 This is not like the Spring lockdowns in Europe, when people confined to their homes ventured onto balconies in the evenings to applaud health care workers. Washington Post, "Gloom settles over Europe as days darken and coronavirus surges," 28 Oct. 2020 Friends and family around me at once seem to applaud my success, while also frequently commenting on how insane my work hours are. The Washington Post, "Carolyn Hax Live: 'Adventurous people find ways'," 23 Oct. 2020 All, however, have benefited from having a like-minded ally in the White House—one who has proved willing to not only turn a blind eye to their illiberal tendencies, but also applaud them. Yasmeen Serhan, The Atlantic, "The World Leaders Emboldened by Trump," 19 Oct. 2020 Although these changes are welcomed by many in the health-policy community (see our assessment a year ago), even those who applaud them have been surprised at their speed and impact. Marie Fishpaw, National Review, "What Trump Has Done to Change the Health Care System and How That Has Helped Battle COVID-19," 18 Oct. 2020 All came to applaud his work with spray paint, something that once led him to jail. Marc Lester, Anchorage Daily News, "A graffiti artist and Army soldier is making his mark on Anchorage streets and JBER halls," 9 Oct. 2020 Some will applaud it but most of us from all walks of life must denounce it and vote accordingly. James Barragán, Dallas News, "Voting rights groups sue Texas Gov. Greg Abbott for limiting mail ballot drop-off locations," 2 Oct. 2020

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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Time Traveler for applaud

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for applaud

Last Updated

20 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Applaud.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for applaud


How to pronounce applaud (audio)

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 How to pronounce applaud (audio) \
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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Comments on applaud

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