be·​wil·​der·​ing | \ bi-ˈwil-d(ə-)riŋ , bē-\

Definition of bewildering

: extremely confusing or difficult to understand an utterly bewildering experience a bewildering number of possibilities … a place of odd traditions and bewildering practices.— David Williamson

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Other Words from bewildering

bewilderingly adverb
a bewilderingly complex situation

Examples of bewildering in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

While shoppers are familiar with the bewildering array of cage-free and free-range egg options in stores, how pigs are raised is not something frequently touted on bacon or sausage packages. Colleen Slevin, The Seattle Times, "Undercover video shows pig abuse but also common practices," 30 July 2018 The tax treatment of college football donations has turned into a bewildering tangle thanks to last year’s tax overhaul, the most far-reaching rewrite of the U.S. tax code since 1986. Laura Saunders, WSJ, "Forget the Playoff, College Football’s Burning Question Is About Taxes," 16 Nov. 2018 The plate tectonics framework provided a different—if no less bewildering—explanation: that more than a hemisphere’s worth of water has been consumed into the planet’s molten interior and quite literally disappeared off the face of the Earth. Meg Neal, Popular Mechanics, "We’ve Been Wrong Before: The Expanding Earth Theory," 3 Aug. 2018 The needle represents fully digested election information — a bewildering array of numbers collapsed to a single point. Dara Lind, Vox, "America’s love-hate relationship with the New York Times election needle, explained," 6 Nov. 2018 This is why President Trump's decision to suddenly rescue a Chinese telecom company facing ruinous U.S. trade restrictions is so bewildering — and perhaps worrying. Adam Taylor, Washington Post, "How Trump’s ZTE deal could undercut his foreign policy," 16 May 2018 Soaring spaces are filled with interactive arts and science exhibits that tick a bewildering array of boxes, from fashion, design, and technology to transportation, space, engineering, and ecology. Sophie Davies, Condé Nast Traveler, "15 Best Museums in Sydney," 23 Mar. 2018 There's a bewildering array of options, including a variety of materials, treatments, and sizes to choose from. Tim Mckeough, ELLE Decor, "Kitchen Tile Shopping Guide," 21 Sep. 2011 The shift is hardly less bewildering to Sawyer and her fellow soldiers. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: The Past Is Never Dead. It’s Not Even Past," 8 Nov. 2018

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

1761, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

26 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for bewildering

The first known use of bewildering was in 1761

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More from Merriam-Webster on bewildering

Nglish: Translation of bewildering for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of bewildering for Arabic Speakers

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irregularly rounded

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