bois·​ter·​ous ˈbȯi-st(ə-)rəs How to pronounce boisterous (audio)
: noisily turbulent : rowdy
: marked by or expressive of exuberance and high spirits
: coarse
boisterously adverb
boisterousness noun
Choose the Right Synonym for boisterous

vociferous, clamorous, blatant, strident, boisterous, obstreperous mean so loud or insistent as to compel attention.

vociferous implies a vehement shouting or calling out.

vociferous cries of protest and outrage

clamorous may imply insistency as well as vociferousness in demanding or protesting.

clamorous demands for prison reforms

blatant implies an offensive bellowing or insensitive loudness.

blatant rock music
a blatant clamor for impeachment

strident suggests harsh and discordant noise.

heard the strident cry of the crow

boisterous suggests a noisiness and turbulence due to high spirits.

a boisterous crowd of party goers

obstreperous suggests unruly and aggressive noisiness and resistance to restraint.

the obstreperous demonstrators were arrested

Examples of boisterous in a Sentence

The crowd was young and boisterous, the cheeseburgers were juicy and perfectly charred, and the place was always packed. Jonathan Black, Saveur, October 2007
Things had apparently gotten a little too boisterous during the Northern Ohio Girls Soccer League games. And it wasn't the kids. Fed up with noisy, know-it-all parents, the league banned cheering and jeering from the sidelines for one game, which they dubbed Silent Sunday. Kate Rounds, Ms., December 1999/January 2000
Suzanne Massie, boisterous and voluble as we drove through her adopted neighborhood in St. Petersburg, hurtled to a sudden stop. She was laughing uproariously to see the spot, where five years earlier, her rented car had fallen apart … Christopher Lydon, Atlantic, February 1993
A large and boisterous crowd attended the concert. the fans at the baseball game became particularly boisterous after the home run
Recent Examples on the Web The drink even once sparked a riot at the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1826, when campus staff intervened after cadets, possibly including a young Jefferson Davis, served eggnog at a boisterous Christmas party despite the school’s ban on alcohol. Taryn White, Smithsonian Magazine, 28 Nov. 2023 There, amid a boisterous crowd of revelers wreathed in cigarette smoke and bobbing together on an ocean of booze, Lenny and his pals Betty Comden and Adolph Green (Mallory Portnoy and Nick Blaemire) are lighting up the room. Manohla Dargis, New York Times, 22 Nov. 2023 On a few nights each week, veteran host Sean Hannity has been doing his program in front of a live, in-studio audience — and encourages the crowd to be boisterous before the cameras go on. Brian Steinberg, Variety, 20 Nov. 2023 Canvasbacks aren’t especially boisterous ducks, with the drakes making a low, rolling growl, sometimes described as a croak, and the hens a softer mallard-like quack. M.d. Johnson, Field & Stream, 8 Nov. 2023 The trailer cuts to a dinner party with a grown-up, boisterous Cary. Jp Mangalindan, Peoplemag, 16 Nov. 2023 Sunny Los Angeles was the leading edge of bather art in the boisterous 1960s, led by British expat David Hockney, who was busy painting sumptuous pictures of men in showers and lounging around swimming pools. Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Times, 9 Nov. 2023 Who among us hasn’t gotten lost, staving off panic with boisterous optimism? Jeff Ihaza, Rolling Stone, 7 Nov. 2023 Fraser has a brief supporting turn as W. S. Hamilton, the boisterous attorney for William Hale (Robert De Niro). Zack Sharf, Variety, 2 Nov. 2023 See More

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

Word History


Middle English boistous crude, clumsy, from Anglo-French

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 3a

Time Traveler
The first known use of boisterous was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near boisterous

Cite this Entry

“Boisterous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


bois·​ter·​ous ˈbȯi-st(ə-)rəs How to pronounce boisterous (audio)
: noisily rough : rowdy
a boisterous crowd
: marked by high spirits
boisterous laughter
: vigorously active : stormy
boisterously adverb
boisterousness noun

More from Merriam-Webster on boisterous

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