\ ˈbrȯd How to pronounce broad (audio) \
broader; broadest

Definition of broad

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : having ample extent from side to side or between limits broad shoulders … one of the broadest estuaries of any river in America.— William Styron
b : having a specified extension from side to side made the path 10 feet broad
2 : extending far and wide : spacious the broad plains
3 : relating to the main or essential points broad outlines
4a : open, full a crime committed in broad daylight
b : plain, obvious a broad hint
5 linguistics : dialectal especially in pronunciation a broad northern accent
6a : liberal, tolerant broad views
b : widely applicable or applied : general a broad rule the broader sense of the word
c : wide in range or amount This store has a broader selection of items. a politician with broad [=widespread] appeal There is broad agreement [=many people agree] that these changes are needed.
7 of a vowel : open used specifically of a pronounced as in father
8 : marked by lack of restraint, delicacy, or subtlety:
a : coarse, risqué broad humor
b obsolete : outspoken … from broad words … Macduff lives in disgrace.— Shakespeare



Definition of broad (Entry 2 of 3)

: in a broad (see broad entry 1 sense 4a) manner : fully broad awake



Definition of broad (Entry 3 of 3)

1 slang, often offensive : woman
2 British : an expansion of a river often used in plural

Other Words from broad


broadly adverb
He smiled broadly.
broadness noun
the broadness of the law's scope

Synonyms & Antonyms for broad

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Choose the Right Synonym for broad


broad, wide, deep mean having horizontal extent. broad and wide apply to a surface measured or viewed from side to side. a broad avenue wide is more common when units of measurement are mentioned rugs eight feet wide or applied to unfilled space between limits. a wide doorway broad is preferred when full horizontal extent is considered. broad shoulders deep may indicate horizontal extent away from the observer or from a front or peripheral point. a deep cupboard deep woods

Examples of broad in a Sentence

Adjective The store has a broad selection of coats. There was broad agreement on the new government. There are three broad categories of industry in the region: computers, finance, and education. the broad outlines of a problem discusses “family” in its broadest sense
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The killing of the woman, Naira Ashraf, in broad daylight was caught on film and left the Arab world in shock as activists called for justice and more protection for women. Hadas Gold, CNN, 1 July 2022 But for now, the same reason a man can take multiple wives in Utah is the same reason another can operate a psilocybin church in broad daylight. Cassady Rosenblum, Rolling Stone, 28 June 2022 Someone was recording on their phone as, in broad daylight on or before Thursday, three wheeled launchers apparently belonging to the 19th Separate Missile Brigade fired their Tochkas one after another in rapid succession. David Axe, Forbes, 27 June 2022 The shooting happened in broad daylight on a Sunday afternoon in the Inglenook community. Carol Robinson |, al, 27 June 2022 Esmailzadeh was a colleague of Colonel Hassan Sayyad-Khodaei, who was shot dead in his car outside his home in Tehran in broad daylight on May 22. Somayeh Malekian, ABC News, 21 June 2022 The massacre begins with this sequence of Sons getting picked off one by one in broad daylight — in a motel room, at a coffee cart, at a stoplight. Kristen Baldwin,, 1 June 2022 Brazen thefts have increased in Los Angeles and have become a concern to law enforcement as thieves often target unsuspecting victims, even in broad daylight. Lawrence Richard, Fox News, 31 May 2022 Some lawyers expressed relief that the Glencore certifications weren’t overly broad, and instead tailored to the specific legal violations at issue. Dylan Tokar, WSJ, 16 June 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb But advertising’s problems aren’t necessarily broad-based, and despite the negativity there are pockets of optimism. Alex Weprin, The Hollywood Reporter, 21 June 2022 Hiring has not been even, with some sectors like healthcare still scrambling for workers, but growth has been broad-based, the department said. Michael E. Kanell, ajc, 16 June 2022 One thing that’s always been true about Yelp is that our platform is broad-based so when consumer spending shifts, say from restaurants to something else, that other category is often captured somewhere else on Yelp. Haleluya Hadero, Chicago Tribune, 13 June 2022 Price increases were broad-based in May, which could be a sign that inflation is becoming entrenched in the U.S. economy. David Harrison, WSJ, 10 June 2022 One encouraging sign, Vitner said, was that hiring was broad-based across most of the economy. Christopher Rugaber, ajc, 3 June 2022 These investments need to be broad-based, including equipment, processes and especially people. Rebecca Henderson, Forbes, 2 June 2022 Eligibility for the Affordable Connectivity Program is pretty broad-based. Andy Meek, BGR, 19 May 2022 The downgrade is broad-based, which includes the world's largest economies such as the U.S., China and the European Union. Damian J. Troise, ajc, 18 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'broad.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of broad


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above


1659, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for broad


Middle English brood, from Old English brād; akin to Old High German breit broad


Middle English broode, from Old English brāde, adverbial derivative of brād broad entry 1


Middle English brood, noun derivative of brood broad entry 1

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Time Traveler for broad

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The first known use of broad was before the 12th century

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Dictionary Entries Near broad

broach turner



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Last Updated

6 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Broad.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 6 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for broad


\ ˈbrȯd How to pronounce broad (audio) \
broader; broadest

Kids Definition of broad

1 : not narrow : wide a broad stripe
2 : extending far and wide : spacious broad prairies
3 : complete entry 1 sense 1, full broad daylight
4 : not limited a broad choice of subjects
5 : covering only the main points : general a broad explanation

Other Words from broad

broadly adverb

Broad geographical name

\ ˈbrȯd How to pronounce Broad (audio) \

Definition of Broad

1 river 220 miles (354 kilometers) long in North Carolina and South Carolina — see saluda
2 river 70 miles (113 kilometers) long in southern South Carolina flowing into the Atlantic

More from Merriam-Webster on broad

Nglish: Translation of broad for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of broad for Arabic Speakers


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