astonish

play
verb as·ton·ish \ə-ˈstä-nish\

Definition of astonish

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to strike with sudden and usually great wonder or surprise He was too astonished to speak They were astonished by the vastness and majesty of the cathedral. In retrospect, it astonishes me that we avoided a major quarrel for so long. — Christopher Hitchens

  3. 2 obsolete :  to strike with sudden fear

Examples of astonish in a Sentence

  1. Despite the hype, there was nothing in the book to astonish readers.

  2. The garden's beauty never fails to astonish.

Recent Examples of astonish from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of astonish

probably from earlier astony (from Middle English astonen, astonien, from Anglo-French estoner to stun, from Vulgar Latin *extonare, from Latin ex- + tonare to thunder) + -ish (as in abolish) — more at 1thunder

Synonym Discussion of astonish

surprise, astonish, astound, amaze, flabbergast mean to impress forcibly through unexpectedness. surprise stresses causing an effect through being unexpected but not necessarily unusual or novel. surprised to find them at home astonish implies surprising so greatly as to seem incredible. a discovery that astonished the world astound stresses the shock of astonishment. too astounded to respond amaze suggests an effect of bewilderment. amazed by the immense size of the place flabbergast may suggest thorough astonishment and bewilderment or dismay. flabbergasted by his angry refusal

ASTONISH Defined for English Language Learners

astonish

play
verb

Definition of astonish for English Language Learners

  • : to cause a feeling of great wonder or surprise in (someone)


ASTONISH Defined for Kids

astonish

play
verb as·ton·ish \ə-ˈstä-nish\

Definition of astonish for Students

astonished

;

astonishing

  1. :  to strike with sudden wonder or surprise I was astonished to find a meteorite in my backyard.



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