astonishment

noun
as·​ton·​ish·​ment | \ ə-ˈstä-nish-mənt How to pronounce astonishment (audio) \

Definition of astonishment

1a : a feeling of great surprise and wonder : the state of being astonished : amazement The garden's beauty filled me with astonishment.
2 : something that astonishes : a cause of amazement or wonder Everything that he had seen so far … had been so astonishing that he began to wonder whether there could possibly be any more astonishments left.— Roald Dahl

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for astonishment

Synonyms

admiration, amazement, awe, wonder, wonderment

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of astonishment in a Sentence

The garden's beauty filled me with astonishment. A crowd watched in astonishment as he jumped from the bridge. They discovered to their astonishment that their car had been stolen. Much to the astonishment of her friends and family, she left school to pursue her acting career.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

The thoughtfulness with which Schulz examines humanity does not expire and does not cease to provoke astonishment (much like Lucy’s ongoing charade with the football). Nicole Rudick, The New Yorker, "How “Peanuts” Created a Space for Thinking," 6 Aug. 2019 To the network’s astonishment, several of them clicked with viewers. Mark Dawidziak, cleveland.com, "‘Seinfeld,’ ‘Mad Men’ and other summer starters that turned into red-hot hits," 2 Aug. 2019 One of the astonishments of these times is just how large a half-century has become. David Von Drehle, Twin Cities, "David Von Drehle: Digging into our planet’s history," 22 July 2019 This past week, much to my astonishment, a half-sister was identified. Amy Dickinson, The Denver Post, "Ask Amy: Woman fears running into her hometown abuser," 29 July 2019 This past week, much to my astonishment, a half-sister was identified. Amy Dickinson, BostonGlobe.com, "Woman fears running into her hometown abuser," 29 July 2019 This past week, much to my astonishment, a half-sister was identified. Ask Amy, oregonlive.com, "Ask Amy: Website unearths half-sibling, a secret their parents took to the grave," 29 July 2019 This past week, much to my astonishment, a half-sister was identified. Amy Dickinson, The Mercury News, "Ask Amy: Should I reveal the secret my parents took to their graves?," 29 July 2019 This past week, much to my astonishment, a half-sister was identified. Amy Dickinson, chicagotribune.com, "Ask Amy: Woman fears running into her hometown abuser," 29 July 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of astonishment

1566, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about astonishment

Dictionary Entries near astonishment

astonished

astonishedly

astonishing

astonishment

astony

astoop

Astor

Statistics for astonishment

Last Updated

19 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for astonishment

The first known use of astonishment was in 1566

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for astonishment

astonishment

noun

English Language Learners Definition of astonishment

: a feeling of being very surprised

astonishment

noun
as·​ton·​ish·​ment | \ ə-ˈstä-nish-mənt How to pronounce astonishment (audio) \

Kids Definition of astonishment

: great surprise or wonder : amazement We watched in astonishment.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on astonishment

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

WORD OF THE DAY

miscellaneous remnants or debris

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!