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

Definition of barnstorm

intransitive verb

1 : to tour through rural districts staging usually theatrical performances
2 : to travel from place to place making brief stops (as in a political campaign or a promotional tour)
3 : 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

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Other Words from barnstorm

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 Biden became the presumptive Democratic nominee in early March, and the COVID-19 pandemic put a halt to barnstorming a few weeks later, but the rhetoric of Trump’s campaign has barely budged. Peter Slevin, The New Yorker, "The Trump Campaign Brings Its Angry Tone to the Coronavirus Era," 16 May 2020 Sanders barnstormed across Texas the day after his win in the Nevada caucuses, with stops in Austin, El Paso, Houston and San Antonio. Bart Jansen, USA TODAY, "'Not over yet': Biden-Sanders on Super Tuesday collision course as biggest trove of delegates awaits," 2 Mar. 2020 Ahead of the primaries this weekend and on Tuesday, Buttigieg is barnstorming through North Carolina, Texas, Oklahoma and California. Jack Turman, CBS News, "Buttigieg struggles to win support of minority voters in South Carolina and Super Tuesday states," 28 Feb. 2020 Since the frenzy in Iowa one week ago, candidates have barnstormed the state ahead of its primary on Tuesday, the nation's first. New York Times, "Surviving the Final Hours in New Hampshire," 10 Feb. 2020 Democrats spent the weekend barnstorming New Hampshire in their final push to court voters ahead of the primary, which begins at midnight Monday in the township of Dixville Notch. David Jackson, USA TODAY, "Trump says Coronavirus will be gone by April when the weather gets warmer - updates," 10 Feb. 2020 The fact that Sanders went to El Paso immediately after Nevada and then barnstormed across the state strongly suggests his campaign concurs about the vital importance of Texas. Noah Millman, TheWeek, "What if Super Tuesday clarifies nothing?," 27 Feb. 2020 Black teams played on city sandlots and country fields, with the best barnstorming their way across the country and throughout the Caribbean. Rob Ruck, Smithsonian Magazine, "How Baseball’s Negro Leagues Defied the Stereotypes of Segregation," 15 Feb. 2020 After barnstorming each of the Hawkeye State’s 99 counties, holding 400 public events, and shaking some 24,000 hands, however, Delaney dropped out of the race—three days before a single vote was cast. Clifton Leaf, Fortune, "The case for a national primary," 11 Feb. 2020

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

1883, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

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Time Traveler for barnstorm

Time Traveler

The first known use of barnstorm was in 1883

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Statistics for barnstorm

Last Updated

31 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Barnstorm.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

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How to pronounce barnstorm (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of barnstorm

chiefly US : to travel to different places to give speeches, perform shows, etc.

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More from Merriam-Webster on barnstorm

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for barnstorm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with barnstorm

Britannica English: Translation of barnstorm for Arabic Speakers

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