bliz·​zard | \ ˈbli-zərd \

Definition of blizzard

1 : a long severe snowstorm
2 : an intensely strong cold wind filled with fine snow
3 : an overwhelming rush or deluge a blizzard of mail around the holidays

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Other Words from blizzard

blizzardy \ ˈbli-​zər-​dē \ or less commonly blizzardly \ ˈbli-​ˌzərd-​lē \ adjective

Did You Know?

The earliest recorded appearance of the word blizzard meaning “a severe snowstorm” was in the April 23, 1870 issue of a newspaper published in Estherville, Iowa. Blizzard shows up again during the following years in several newspapers in Iowa and neighboring states, and by 1888, when a snowstorm paralyzed the Eastern seaboard, the word was well-known nationally. However, in other senses, the word blizzard existed earlier. Davy Crocket, for instance, used it twice in the 1830s, once to mean a rifle blast and once to mean for a blast of words. All of these uses seem related, but the ultimate origin of the word is still unclear.

Examples of blizzard in a Sentence

We were snowed in by a raging blizzard.

Recent Examples on the Web

Upwards of 1,200 flights were cancelled on Sunday as travelers across the country were heading home, thanks to the blizzard conditions that stretched from Kansas City to Chicago. Meredith Carey, Condé Nast Traveler, "Winter Storm Bruce Leads to Flight Delays, Cancellations," 26 Nov. 2018 Over the weekend, Bruce brought blizzard conditions to much of the Midwest. Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "Winter Storm Bruce Is Heading to the Northeast After Pounding the Midwest," 26 Nov. 2018 Students battled blizzard-like conditions in March 2016. Douglas Belkin, WSJ, "New Front in College Admissions: Nudging Students to Decide Early," 2 Jan. 2019 From tsunamis and floods, to blizzards and wildfires, the world is full of natural disasters. Discover Magazine, "Predicting Extreme Weather," 14 Sep. 2018 Since its launch in late 2016, GOES-16 has sent back incredible images of powerful hurricanes, major blizzards and severe thunderstorm outbreaks unlike anything seen before from a weather satellite, AccuWeather said. Doyle Rice, USA TODAY, "USA's newest weather satellite suffers critical malfunction," 24 May 2018 For something kickier than the Grand Master Frappé from Boogie Down Grind Cafe, order a frose at Terroir at the Porch - basically a glass of rosé stuck in a blizzard. Andrea Sachs,, "Take a walk on New York's High Line from end-to-end," 2 July 2018 In the blizzard of January 2015 the European model predicted that New York City would get hit with two feet of snow. Samantha Durbin, Washington Post, "What are weather models, exactly, and how do they work?," 18 May 2018 Beyond the complex series of personnel changes required to dispatch Mueller and his team, the high-profile nature of the investigation ensures that its untimely death would result in a blizzard of politically damaging leaks. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "Donald Trump Has Never Been More Dangerous Than He Is Now," 21 Mar. 2018

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

1870, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for blizzard

origin unknown

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Dictionary Entries near blizzard





blizzard head



Statistics for blizzard

Last Updated

21 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for blizzard

The first known use of blizzard was in 1870

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More Definitions for blizzard



English Language Learners Definition of blizzard

: a severe snowstorm that goes on for a long time

: a large amount of something that comes suddenly


bliz·​zard | \ ˈbli-zərd \

Kids Definition of blizzard

: a long heavy snowstorm

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More from Merriam-Webster on blizzard

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with blizzard

Spanish Central: Translation of blizzard

Nglish: Translation of blizzard for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of blizzard for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about blizzard

Comments on blizzard

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a complex dispute or argument

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