arm·​chair | \ ˈärm-ˌcher How to pronounce armchair (audio) \

Definition of armchair

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a chair with armrests



Definition of armchair (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : remote from direct dealing with problems : theoretical rather than practical armchair strategists
2 : sharing vicariously in another's experiences an armchair traveler

Examples of armchair in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Another highlight is a guest room, complete with an eye-catching black and white striped accent wall paired with a playful yellow armchair from B&B Italia. Monique Valeris, ELLE Decor, "An Art-Filled Hamptons Property That One Entertainment Executive Calls Home," 29 Oct. 2019 The cushion on the armchair squishes under his weight, the curtains part on their own, the cigarette burns and moves around in thin air. Emmanuel Carrère, Harper's magazine, "Reappearing Act," 28 Oct. 2019 Boynton then retrieved from a nearby armchair one of her sister’s old stuffed toys, a plush incarnation of J. J. Morgan, a television-celebrity basset hound from the early 1950s. Ian Bogost, The Atlantic, "The Bard of Bedtime," 8 Oct. 2019 Louis XIV was one of the architects of modern dictatorship, and President Donald Trump likes more about his style than merely his taste in armchairs. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, "Prince Don," 27 Sep. 2019 Every available surface of Osborn's modest Oak Lawn townhouse was stuffed with elegant figurines, paintings and furnishings, including a pair of Empire-style armchairs clad in fabric given to Osborn by fashion legend Gianni Versace. Christopher Wynn, Dallas News, "Derrill Osborn, former Neiman Marcus fashion executive, collector and Dallas style icon, dies at 76," 3 July 2019 Instead of fussy old florals, armchairs and sofas are clad in vibrant botanical textiles and luxe velvets that look more at home in a living room than a funeral parlor. Jennifer Fernandez, House Beautiful, "Exit Here May Be the World's Coolest Funeral Home," 31 Oct. 2019 Game of Thrones didn’t sweep the 71st Emmy Awards on Sunday night like some critics (armchair and professional) thought the show might for its final season. Melissa Locker, Time, "Here's Why Some Game of Thrones Actors Didn't Take the Stage at the 2019 Emmys Last Night," 23 Sep. 2019 The 50 guest rooms feature overstuffed armchairs and settees and thick jewel-tone curtains, all surrounded by 22 acres of classic gardens. Alexander Lobrano, WSJ, "The New Provence: From Quaint to Uber-Chic," 11 July 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Armchair cooks and armchair travelers who don’t cook at all — or actual travelers looking for where or what to eat away from home. Carol Deptolla, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Gift guide: 2019 cookbooks and companion goodies for food and drink lovers," 5 Dec. 2019 Some of you become armchair travelers; others will truly travel., "Most popular on," 2 Dec. 2019 For the armchair traveler, the one prepping for an upcoming trip, or those just looking to reminisce about a recent vacation, these books will do the trick. Megan Spurrell, Condé Nast Traveler, "The 11 Best Cookbooks for Eating Your Way Around the World," 21 Nov. 2019 But the armchair analyst was working with limited options. Monica Hesse, Washington Post, "What does female authority sound like? Marie Yovanovitch and Fiona Hill just showed us.," 22 Nov. 2019 Tamils don’t have the stomach for another conflict, except armchair militants in the diaspora. Manavi Kapur, Quartz India, "A Sri Lankan author remembers the easy, “mixed fruit” society before the civil war tore it apart," 22 Nov. 2019 There is a sense of entitlement to people’s trauma and a kind of gleeful armchair detective work that doesn’t come with the gravitas of the situation. Eric Todisco,, "Amanda Knox and Lorena Bobbitt Reveal Friendship: 'We Are Human Beings' and 'Have a Lot in Common'," 12 Nov. 2019 Undaunted: Normandy Previous SlideNext Slide Historical battle games can be a bit of a niche, with lots of complex simulations catering to hardcore armchair generals. Owen Duffy, Ars Technica, "The best new board games from the world’s biggest board game show," 3 Nov. 2019 Where armchair psychoanalysts are concerned, there has always been speculation as to whether Mozart intended the piece to be played at his own funeral mass. Mike Giuliano,, "Columbia Pro Cantare lifts voices to heaven for Mozart Requiem," 25 Oct. 2019

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


1585, in the meaning defined above


1809, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for armchair

Time Traveler

The first known use of armchair was in 1585

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Statistics for armchair

Last Updated

9 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Armchair.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 13 December 2019.

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More Definitions for armchair


How to pronounce armchair (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of armchair

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a chair with supports for your arms



English Language Learners Definition of armchair (Entry 2 of 2)

used to describe people who like to read about or watch the dangerous or exciting activities of other people
used to describe people who like to give opinions about matters they do not have to deal with themselves and do not have responsibility for


arm·​chair | \ ˈärm-ˌcher How to pronounce armchair (audio) \

Kids Definition of armchair

: a chair with armrests

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More from Merriam-Webster on armchair

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with armchair

Spanish Central: Translation of armchair

Nglish: Translation of armchair for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of armchair for Arabic Speakers

Comments on armchair

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


easily led, controlled, or managed

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