\ ˈblər How to pronounce blur (audio) \

Definition of blur

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a smear or stain that obscures
2 : something vaguely or indistinctly perceived The words are just a blur without his glasses. The whole weekend is a blur to me. especially : something moving or occurring too quickly to be clearly seen passed by in a blur of motion


blurred; blurring

Definition of blur (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to obscure or blemish by smearing windows blurred by fingerprints
2 : sully … an act that blurs the grace and blush of modesty.— Shakespeare
3 : to make dim, indistinct, or vague in outline or character His vision was blurred. digitally blur the edges of photographs blurring the line between fact and fiction
4 : to make cloudy or confused time had begun to blur her senses— W. A. White

intransitive verb

1a : to make blurs … the moths tapped and blurred at the window screen …— R. P. Warren
b : move too quickly to be seen clearly … it's like the … ride of a traveling carnival, with eerie lights and sharp turns on the rails and the odd unsettling image that blurs past you.— Adrian McKinty
2 : to become vague or indistinct distinctions between the two are beginning to blur

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Other Words from blur


blurringly \ ˈblər-​iŋ-​lē How to pronounce blurringly (audio) \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for blur

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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Examples of blur in a Sentence

Verb The tears in my eyes blurred the words on the page. His novel is based on historical occurrences but it blurs the line between fact and fiction. The two events have blurred together in my mind.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The rest of the morning was a blur, but the details remain seared into her memory. Stefan Krajisnisk, Indianapolis Star, "IU student's lowest point, the loss of her brother, led her to the Little 500," 23 May 2020 The long, hot day was a blur. Brittany Jones’ arms stung from loading bag after bag of produce into a seemingly endless stream of vehicles as families hit hard by the pandemic’s economic effects sought to replenish dwindling food supplies. Vincent T. Davis,, "Young ‘hunger fighter’ works with San Antonio Food Bank as AmeriCorps volunteer, serving the community she loves," 4 May 2020 The models walked around the building’s glowing signature dome and cars honked a soundtrack and the tiny bralets faded into a blur under the harsh lights. Robin Givhan, Washington Post, "At Paris Fashion Week, designers reworked the tuxedo and explored the meaning of color. And, oh yeah, Kanye showed up.," 3 Mar. 2020 At the same time, the speed with which his mind worked sometimes left a blur on the page. Anthony Gottlieb, The New Yorker, "The Man Who Thought Too Fast," 27 Apr. 2020 From its opening cliff dive to an extended shootout on a bridge that gives Extraction its heart-in-mouth finale, the film is a kinetic blur of action overload, inclined toward long takes and minimal editing. Isaac Feldberg, Fortune, "Chris Hemsworth calls ‘Extraction’ the ‘most exhausting’ shoot of his career," 23 Apr. 2020 Though vivid by itself, the Feb. 16 encounter blurs into the emotional gantlet through which Howard played the regular season - grief, injury, criticism and finally desperation as the Mavericks clawed for a playoff spot. Sportsday Staff, Dallas News, "From the archives: Obstacles faced during ex-Mavs forward Josh Howard’s NBA career," 16 Apr. 2020 In that book, a Portland teenager named Andrea discovers her own local scene and her life becomes an enviable, angsty blur of vintage dresses, punk shows, and the intermittent attentions of a damaged musician. Eryn Loeb, Longreads, "On Watching Boys Play Music," 8 Apr. 2020 The front selfie camera—which had the second most megapixels of any in the test—worked similarly, recognizing faces and boasting its own portrait mode that provides that nice blur. Will Egensteiner, Popular Mechanics, "The Best Camera Phones, Whether You’re an Apple Fan or Android Adherent," 31 Mar. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Across social media, users have shared videos of themselves turning the pages of their local papers or posted tiled pictures of all the pages of death notices, the obituaries blurring into a yearbook of the dead. Casey Cep, The New Yorker, "Telling the Stories of the Dead Is Essential Work," 14 May 2020 Critics say their actions can blur into market manipulation. Lisa Pham,, "How Short Sellers Become Targets During Market Routs," 5 May 2020 In the mid- to late-March surge of Milwaukee COVID-19 cases, one long day blurred into another for Shanna, who manages respiratory services at two Aurora hospitals: Sinai Medical Center and West Allis Medical Center. Mark Johnson, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "'You can see the fear written all over them': Two Milwaukee-based respiratory therapists talk about what it's like on the front lines," 1 May 2020 The second trailer for Cats is upon us, four long months after the first set the internet ablaze with its eerie, Animorphs-esque blurring of human and cat anatomy. Isaac Feldberg, Fortune, "‘Cats,’ Full of Furry Actors and Dubious Decisions, Is the Logical Endpoint of 2019’s Blockbuster Chaos," 19 Nov. 2019 The inclusion of women and guns feeds into the timelessness of Schmidt's setting, as does the period-blurring of Tom Broecker's costumes. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Cyrano': Theater Review," 8 Nov. 2019 Indeed, reports of antipathy from the traditional film community toward Netflix, due to its disruption of business and blurring of the line between feature and TV, aren’t exactly few and far between. David Canfield,, "Why Netflix could run the table at next year's Oscars," 3 Oct. 2019 Scafaria barrels forward so that her film threatens at times to blur into a single, extended montage of high spirits followed by tough times followed by the visual details of the scam these women are running. Michael Phillips,, "'Hustlers’ review: J-Lo, Constance Wu and Cardi B strip Wall Street boys of their assets," 11 Sep. 2019 By switching so quickly, in just two pithy words, news programs blurred the lines between what was important and what was not. Rory Smith, New York Times, "Newcastle, Saudi Arabia and the Power of Words," 24 Apr. 2020

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


1519, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1520, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for blur

Noun and Verb

perhaps akin to Middle English bleren to blear

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Statistics for blur

Last Updated

2 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

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

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More Definitions for blur


How to pronounce blur (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of blur

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that you cannot see clearly
: something that is difficult to remember



English Language Learners Definition of blur (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make (something) unclear or difficult to see or remember
: to become unclear or difficult to see or remember


\ ˈblər How to pronounce blur (audio) \

Kids Definition of blur

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something that cannot be seen clearly The ball was moving so fast, all I saw was a blur.
2 : something that is difficult to remember By now, my summer vacation is a blur.


blurred; blurring

Kids Definition of blur (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to make unclear or hard to see or remember Adjusting the lenses just blurred the image further.
2 : to make or become unclear or confused Time only blurred his memory of the incident.

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More from Merriam-Webster on blur

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for blur

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with blur

Spanish Central: Translation of blur

Nglish: Translation of blur for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of blur for Arabic Speakers

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