calm

noun
\ ˈkäm How to pronounce calm (audio) , ˈkälm How to pronounce calm (audio) , ˈkam, ˈkȯ(l)m\

Definition of calm

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : a period or condition of freedom from storms, high winds, or rough activity of water a sailing ship motionless in the calm
b : complete absence of wind or presence of wind having a speed no greater than one mile (1.6 kilometers) per hour — see Beaufort Scale Table
2 : a state of tranquility At dusk a quiet calm settled over the town.

calm

verb
calmed; calming; calms

Definition of calm (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

: to become calm usually used with down The mayor asked the protesters to calm down so he could speak.

transitive verb

: to make calm often used with down calm him down; get him to be reasonable— S. H. Adams

calm

adjective

Definition of calm (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : marked by calm : still a calm sea
2 : free from agitation, excitement, or disturbance

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Other Words from calm

Adjective

calmly adverb
calmness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for calm

Adjective

calm, tranquil, serene, placid, peaceful mean quiet and free from disturbance. calm often implies a contrast with a foregoing or nearby state of agitation or violence. the protests ended, and the streets were calm again tranquil suggests a very deep quietude or composure. the tranquil beauty of a formal garden serene stresses an unclouded and lofty tranquility. watched the sunset of a serene summer's evening placid suggests an undisturbed appearance and often implies a degree of complacency. remained placid despite the criticism peaceful implies a state of repose in contrast with or following strife or turmoil. grown peaceful in old age

Adjective

calm, peaceful, and tranquil mean quiet and free from disturbance. calm is used when someone is not excited or upset even when there is cause for it. They stayed calm during the fire. peaceful is used when someone or something has reached a quiet state after some period of disturbance. The storm is over and the lake is peaceful again. tranquil is used for a total or lasting state of rest. They stopped at a tranquil garden.

Examples of calm in a Sentence

Noun

After two days of violent protests, the mayor appealed for calm. The calm was broken by another terrorist bombing. the calm of a church Police tried to restore calm after the riot. A quiet calm settled over the city.

Verb

His words were effective in calming her fears. The medicine helped calm her breathing.

Adjective

The teacher asked us to remain calm after the fire alarm went off. Let's try to have a calm discussion about your grades.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Advertising The first steps toward the restoration of calm were nonetheless punctuated by exchanges of fire along the border. Isabel Debre, The Seattle Times, "Israel, Hamas take first steps toward Gaza cease-fire deal," 31 Mar. 2019 That palette is one of light blues, bright whites, and dashes of natural woods—all of which serve to reflect the home's beachfront locale while creating a sense of calm. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "Minnie Driver Turns a Double Wide Trailer Into a Beachside Oasis with One Kings Lane," 22 Feb. 2019 Maintaining a sense of calm throughout her busy life is clearly a priority for the chef. Ana Calderone, PEOPLE.com, "Yoga, Acupuncture and '20 Pills a Day': Everything Giada De Laurentiis Does to Feel Her Best," 24 May 2018 However, those three words don’t often conjure an image of calm. Brian Murphy, OrlandoSentinel.com, "UCF closer Bryce Tucker flips switch on the field, menaces opposing batters," 22 May 2018 As more than 100 American cities burned that night, the city where her father had spoken of his own brother’s murder was an island of calm. Robert King, Indianapolis Star, "John Lewis, Kerry Kennedy highlight MLK events recalling Robert F. Kennedy's Indianapolis speech," 4 Apr. 2018 After an unusually long period of calm, stocks plunged at the start of February as investors worried about inflation and rising interest rates. Marley Jay, Houston Chronicle, "Stocks stretch winning streak to 6 days despite turbulence," 16 Feb. 2018 Hart captioned a Tuesday photo of a calm-looking Willow holding her tooth in one hand and the cash in the other. Jen Juneau, PEOPLE.com, "Pink and Carey Hart's Daughter Willow Pulls Her Own Tooth for $100: 'Best Money I Ever Spent'," 20 June 2018 The couple wanted to punctuate the calm with just the right amount of energizing, strong color. Nancy Hass, ELLE Decor, "This Brian J. McCarthy-Designed Hamptons Home is Filled with the Unexpected," 13 Mar. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Winds have calmed but will still be moving at around 40 mph across much of Japan through Wednesday night. Katherine Lagrave, Condé Nast Traveler, "Typhoon Jebi Batters Japan, Forces Airport Closure," 5 Sep. 2018 Guatemala's volcanology agency says the eruption had calmed by about 10 p.m. Sunday (4 a.m. Monday GMT). Bloomberg.com, "The Latest on Guatemala’s Deadly Volcano Eruption," 4 June 2018 Until this week markets had been calmed by the economy’s relative solidity. The Economist, "An Italian populist government looks likely, and risky," 17 May 2018 In addition to reducing inflammation, CBD also calms redness and irritation. Taylore Glynn, Marie Claire, "How CBD Can Save Your Skin," 15 Apr. 2019 Far from feeling over-the-top and loud, though, the colorful home is comfortable, calming, and even classic—thanks to Hilliard's clever balance of modern and traditional. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "This Colorful California Home Will Make You Want a Neon Coffee Table," 22 Mar. 2019 And offering some kind of road map to retirement would calm the restiveness among ambitious members who are pushed to either rebel or leave the House. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "House Democrats don’t need a leader, they need someone to represent them on TV," 20 Nov. 2018 According to Hart, royal blue is not just a calming hue, but an opportunity to experience our higher consciousnesses. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "Will Blue Make You Psychic? Can Yellow Detox Your Mind? A Color Therapist Weighs in on Fall 2019’s Color Trends," 4 Apr. 2019 Blues and dark, earthy tones are used to create a calming vibe throughout the collection. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "IKEA's New Summer Collection Is Designed to Help You Destress," 1 Apr. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Brendan looked cool and calm in a classic black tux. Megan Stein, Country Living, "Miranda Lambert Hits the 2019 ACMs Red Carpet with New Husband Brendan McLoughlin," 7 Apr. 2019 Meghan Markle managed to remain cool, calm, and collected in what might've otherwise escalated to a scary situation. D. Elizabeth, Glamour, "Meghan Markle Left Her Solo Fiji Outing Early Due to Security Risks," 24 Oct. 2018 Cool, calm and deliberate, Shults brought her twin-engine Boeing 737 in for an emergency landing after the Southwest jet apparently blew an engine on a flight Wednesday from New York's LaGuardia airport to Dallas. Doug Stanglin, USA TODAY, "Southwest emergency landing pilot Tammie Jo Shults is a pioneer with 'nerves of steel'," 18 Apr. 2018 On state media Thursday, the streets of Daraa appeared calm as the national flag - still eschewed by the opposition - fluttered in the wind and military officials strolled around greeting elderly residents. Louisa Loveluck, chicagotribune.com, "Syrian army raises flag above city considered birthplace of uprising against Assad," 12 July 2018 Najib, wearing a suit and a red tie, appeared calm and smiled as he was escorted into the court complex packed with reporters. NBC News, "Former Malaysian PM Najib Razak charged after multibillion dollar graft scandal," 4 July 2018 Right by his side through it all is Gwen, who remains calm and helps him craft a new piece of choreography that pleases their higher-ups. Christopher Rosa, Glamour, "Fosse/Verdon Proves It's Time to Cancel the Fragile Male Ego," 10 Apr. 2019 But on the whole these teenagers were calm amid the provocations and far less incendiary than the adults who taunted them and the progressive high priests who denounced them. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "The High School Deplorables," 22 Jan. 2019 Both said the men were aggressive and menacing to Rialmo, who was calm during the altercation. Dan Hinkel, chicagotribune.com, "Chicago cop involved in controversial fatal shooting cleared by judge in bar fight," 10 July 2018

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for calm

Noun, Verb, and Adjective

Middle English calme, probably ultimately from Old Spanish calma, from Late Latin cauma heat, from Greek kauma, from kaiein to burn

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Statistics for calm

Last Updated

13 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for calm

The first known use of calm was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for calm

calm

noun

English Language Learners Definition of calm

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a quiet and peaceful state or condition
: a peaceful mental or emotional state

calm

verb

English Language Learners Definition of calm (Entry 2 of 3)

: to become or to cause (someone) to become less upset, emotional, excited, etc.
: to become or to cause (something) to become less active, violent, forceful, etc.

calm

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of calm (Entry 3 of 3)

: not angry, upset, excited, etc.
used to describe weather that is not windy, stormy, etc.

calm

noun
\ ˈkäm How to pronounce calm (audio) , ˈkälm\

Kids Definition of calm

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a period or condition of freedom from storm, wind, or rough water
2 : a quiet and peaceful state We enjoyed the calm of the countryside.

calm

verb
calmed; calming

Kids Definition of calm (Entry 2 of 3)

: to make or become less active or disturbed often used with down The music calmed her.The winds calmed down overnight.

calm

adjective
calmer; calmest

Kids Definition of calm (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : not stormy or windy a calm night
2 : not excited or upset a calm reply Please remain calm.

Other Words from calm

calmly adverb spoke calmly

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More from Merriam-Webster on calm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with calm

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for calm

Spanish Central: Translation of calm

Nglish: Translation of calm for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of calm for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about calm

Comments on calm

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