barn·​storm ˈbärn-ˌstȯrm How to pronounce barnstorm (audio)
barnstormed; barnstorming; barnstorms

intransitive verb

: to tour through rural districts staging usually theatrical performances
: to travel from place to place making brief stops (as in a political campaign or a promotional tour)
: to pilot one's airplane in sightseeing flights with passengers or in exhibition stunts in an unscheduled course especially in rural districts

transitive verb

: to travel across while barnstorming
barnstormer noun

Examples of barnstorm in a Sentence

He spent the months leading up to the election barnstorming around the country. The national soccer team barnstormed through the country.
Recent Examples on the Web At $10, Yorgos Lanthimos’s Poor Things barnstormed Venice and now sits as a major awards contender. Joe Reid, Vulture, 11 Oct. 2023 Following his Twitter event Wednesday, the governor is rumored to begin barnstorming states. Ryan King, Washington Examiner, 24 May 2023 While more attainable models, better suited to grocery-getting than barnstorming, are critical to the future of the brand, dreamers gotta dream—which is why Lucid Motors started planning an even larger-than-life flagship from the get-go. Basem Wasef, Robb Report, 16 Aug. 2023 Fain, elected in March with a remit to reinvigorate the UAW, has barnstormed the negotiations with an ambitious list of demands — and a communications strategy designed to increase worker and public attention to the talks, including through regular updates on Facebook Live. Jeanne Whalen, Washington Post, 4 Aug. 2023 Florida Governor Ron DeSantis barnstormed Iowa this week with six events in two days, hoping to spark a new beginning for his campaign after a series of recent setbacks. Aaron Navarro, CBS News, 28 July 2023 In the final days before the filing deadline, Biden barnstormed the donor circuit, holding big-dollar fundraisers in New York, California, Connecticut, Illinois, and Maryland. Fritz Farrow, ABC News, 14 July 2023 The legal battles could certainly hamper Trump’s ability to barnstorm the country for votes, and provide ammunition to political adversaries. Caroline Petrow-Cohen, Dallas News, 13 June 2023 Rachel Mummey/Bloomberg via Getty Images DeSantis barnstormed the state on Tuesday and Wednesday, followed by stops in New Hampshire on Thursday and South Carolina on Friday. Aaron Navarro, CBS News, 3 June 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'barnstorm.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1883, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of barnstorm was in 1883

Dictionary Entries Near barnstorm

Cite this Entry

“Barnstorm.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


barn·​storm ˈbärn-ˌstȯrm How to pronounce barnstorm (audio)
: to travel through the country making brief stops to entertain (as with shows or flying stunts) or to campaign for political office
barnstormer noun

More from Merriam-Webster on barnstorm

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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