awesome

adjective
awe·​some | \ ˈȯ-səm \

Definition of awesome

1a : inspiring awe an awesome task/responsibility a place of awesome beauty
b informal : terrific, extraordinary had an awesome time at the concert
2 : expressive of awe awesome tribute

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Other Words from awesome

awesomely adverb
awesomeness noun

Is the Word awesome Overused?

Many object to the use of awesome to describe something (such as a sandwich) that does not literally elicit feelings of awe. Yet the same people who insist that awesome should be used only of weighty subjects (Niagara Falls, man landing on the moon) will happily use the word awful in reference to something (such as a mess) that falls distinctly short of being “full of awe.” This weakened sense was once considered improper – in fact, complaints about it persisted through the early decades of the 20th century.

The change in meaning that awesome is undergoing may be more recent than that of awful, but both words are treading the same path. For evidence that such change is normal, we need look no further than awe, which originally meant “terror” and now carries the weaker sense “wonder.”

Examples of awesome in a Sentence

the awesome sight of an erupting volcano It was an awesome responsibility. We had an awesome task ahead of us. We had an awesome time at the concert. You did an awesome job on that project. The movie was totally awesome.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Ezra Klein: Host of our Strikethrough series on YouTube, which is awesome. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Full Q&A: Ezra Klein and Kara Swisher on the future of journalism," 12 Dec. 2018 Overall, the hardware is awesome, and Google did an amazing job building this for $150. Ron Amadeo, Ars Technica, "Google Home Hub review—Awesome hardware for Google’s nascent smart display software," 22 Oct. 2018 The experience here has been awesome, and being able to go out there with amazing players every day and to put this uniform on has really been a blessing. Shawn Mcfarland, courant.com, "UConn's Mason Feole Brings 'Full-Speed' Mentality To USA Baseball," 5 July 2018 For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accepts no bribes. Peter Rowe, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Bordering on faith: San Diego spiritual leaders wrestle with the morality of immigration," 1 July 2018 This loop of a storm over Memphis, though, is universally awesome. Greg Porter, Washington Post, "This mesmerizing storm makes it look like a bomb went off over Memphis last night," 13 July 2018 Amazon is continuing its week of pre-Prime Day sales with a killer deal on an awesome car charger. Alexandria Haslam, PCWorld, "Put Alexa in your car with this awesome Prime sale on Anker's Roav VIVA 2-port USB charger," 11 July 2018 Sounds like awesome news for us music lovers, right? John Kehe, The Christian Science Monitor, "How streaming is saving the music business," 3 July 2018 Much like awesome once served a greater purpose, the exclamation point has been downgraded from a shout of alarm or intensity to a symbol that indicates politeness and friendliness. Julie Beck, The Atlantic, "Exclamation Point Inflation," 27 June 2018

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

1598, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for awesome

see awe entry 1

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Statistics for awesome

Last Updated

24 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for awesome

The first known use of awesome was in 1598

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More Definitions for awesome

awesome

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of awesome

: causing feelings of fear and wonder : causing feelings of awe

: extremely good

awesome

adjective
awe·​some | \ ˈȯ-səm \

Kids Definition of awesome

1 : causing a feeling of respect, fear, and wonder an awesome view of the canyon He … tried not to think of the awesome task that lay ahead of him.— Louis Sachar, Holes
2 : extremely good He made an awesome catch.

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More from Merriam-Webster on awesome

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for awesome

Spanish Central: Translation of awesome

Nglish: Translation of awesome for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of awesome for Arabic Speakers

Comments on awesome

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to gather or build up little by little

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