ar·​dor | \ˈär-dər \

Definition of ardor 

1a : an often restless or transitory warmth of feeling the sudden ardors of youth

b : extreme vigor or energy : intensity the ardor of a true believer

c : zeal

d : loyalty

2 : sexual excitement

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Choose the Right Synonym for ardor

passion, fervor, ardor, enthusiasm, zeal mean intense emotion compelling action. passion applies to an emotion that is deeply stirring or ungovernable. was a slave to his passions fervor implies a warm and steady emotion. read the poem aloud with great fervor ardor suggests warm and excited feeling likely to be fitful or short-lived. the ardor of their honeymoon soon faded enthusiasm applies to lively or eager interest in or admiration for a proposal, cause, or activity. never showed much enthusiasm for sports zeal implies energetic and unflagging pursuit of an aim or devotion to a cause. preaches with fanatical zeal

Examples of ardor in a Sentence

the sudden ardors of youth candidates for citizenship reciting the oath of allegiance to the United States with all the ardor that they could muster

Recent Examples on the Web

His characteristic ardor and heroism were, on this occasion, muted. Alastair Macaulay, New York Times, "Many Giselles, but Only One Osipova," 20 May 2018 His own pieces reach beyond jazz to reflect an ardor for vintage country, gospel, and other Americana. Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader, "Denver cornetist Ron Miles is a fervent student of jazz, but his music spills outside of any defined tradition," 16 Feb. 2018 His wide-eyed ardor for Penelope begins to grow suspiciously shallow. Jake Coyle, kansascity, "Robert Pattinson elevates the melancholy Western ‘Damsel’," 5 July 2018 Asian stock markets’ skew toward technology shares is another factor that could help buffer them from broader emerging-market swoons, given investors’ ardor for the sector. Saumya Vaishampayan, WSJ, "Why Asia’s Emerging Markets Are Looking Better Than Their Peers," 14 June 2018 At this point, Porter conjured uncommon intimacy in the spacious auditorium, thanks to the quiet ardor of his vocals and the gentleness of the symphonic accompaniment led by conductor Outwater. Howard Reich,, "Gregory Porter sounds sumptuous with CSO," 12 June 2018 Her ardor becomes even stronger after the First Policeman (Antoine L. Smith) warns her that Billy uses women for money. Junot Díaz, The New Yorker, "The Dark Fantasies of “Carousel”," 17 Apr. 2018 This enduring ardor goes double for one of Hatfield’s greatest influences, Olivia Newton-John. Michael Andor Brodeur,, "The Weekender: Kennedys, Wallendas, and Nervous Eaters," 5 Apr. 2018 Easily clearing that bar, Ms. Falco gives Carol a gentle kindness and the emotional intelligence to transform Chris’s ardor into a catalyst. Jeannette Catsoulis, New York Times, "Review: On Parole and in Love in ‘Outside In’," 29 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ardor.' 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 ardor

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for ardor

Middle English ardour, from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French, from Latin ardor burning, heat, ardor, from aridus dry — more at arid

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Statistics for ardor

Last Updated

25 Sep 2018

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Time Traveler for ardor

The first known use of ardor was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for ardor



English Language Learners Definition of ardor

: a strong feeling of energy or eagerness

: a strong feeling of love


ar·​dor | \ˈär-dər \

Kids Definition of ardor

1 : warmth of feeling the ardor of young love

2 : great eagerness : zeal … Amy fell to painting with undiminished ardor.— Louisa May Alcott, Little Women

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Comments on ardor

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


an inexhaustible supply or amount

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