ar·​dor | \ ˈär-dər How to pronounce ardor (audio) \

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

That doesn’t mean every other community will oppose Amazon and its peers with the same sort of ardor. Dan Gallagher, WSJ, "Big Tech’s Welcome Mat Is Fraying," 14 Feb. 2019 Wallis Simpson made it for Prince Edward, prompting enduring British ardor. Mark Rozzo, Town & Country, "Celebrating The Club Sandwich," 22 Apr. 2014 And the film is thoughtful and immersive in its use of music, taking the mood from chilly but beautiful to swirling, beating ardor with a score that ranges from haunting Polish folk music to smoky Parisian jazz. Alissa Wilkinson, Vox, "The 21 best movies of 2018," 14 Dec. 2018 What sparked my adolescent ardor for the waiver wire? Joe Queenan, WSJ, "My Best Hoop Dream: Get Waived and Keep the Money," 2 Nov. 2018 But that never seemed to get him down or diminish his ardor for the next battle. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "Read the Full Transcript of Former Senator Joe Lieberman's Speech at John McCain's Memorial Service," 1 Sep. 2018 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

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

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English Language Learners Definition of ardor

: a strong feeling of energy or eagerness
: a strong feeling of love


ar·​dor | \ ˈär-dər How to pronounce ardor (audio) \

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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More from Merriam-Webster on ardor

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with ardor

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ardor

Spanish Central: Translation of ardor

Nglish: Translation of ardor for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ardor for Arabic Speakers

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).


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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