calm

noun
\ˈkäm, ˈkälm, 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

There was no braggadocio to Larry, only calm, considered judgment. John Doerr, WIRED, "When John Doerr Brought a ‘Gift’ to Google’s Founders," 24 Apr. 2018 Noiascape controls the entire process, from development to management, and the brothers believe calm, considered design can be a differentiator. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "Creative coliving from London designers recreates a ‘city in a building’," 19 Apr. 2018 Most of the students accepted this realization with stoicism and remarkable calm. Joshua Partlow, chicagotribune.com, "Inside the church where Nicaraguan paramilitaries laid siege on university students," 14 July 2018 The German has brought a sense of calm to a team that went through five coaches in two years following the 2014 tournament in Brazil. Steven Goff, Houston Chronicle, "FIFA president: World Cup could expand to 48 teams in 2022, ahead of schedule," 13 July 2018 Some analysts think the metals market could rebound if Chinese economic data improve and compromises on trade calm investors. David Hodari, WSJ, "Metals Slide Deepens as Trade Fears Escalate," 11 July 2018 But for the most part, the bees on Friday were calm. Bethany Ao, Philly.com, "Philly millennials are buzzing about beekeeping," 11 July 2018 The only thing certain was, on what was supposed to be one of the final calm days before the NBA’s free-agent storm officially arrives this weekend, the Lakers basketball boss created his own thunder. Bill Plaschke, latimes.com, "Johnson says he has two summers to work his Magic, or he's gone," 27 June 2018 Merkel herself projected calm, dismissing speculation that her government is in trouble and vowing to keep her three-party coalition afloat. John Follain, Bloomberg.com, "Salvini Tells Germany Next Year Will Show Whether EU Has Future," 22 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

This diffuser will calm you down and keep those close quarters smelling fresh. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "15 Care Package Items for Every Kind of College Student," 2 Aug. 2018 The staff gave her books and toys — but they weren’t allowed to pick her up, to hold her or hug her to try to calm her. Nomaan Merchant, BostonGlobe.com, "Reporters were let inside a detention facility for migrant kids. Here’s what it was like," 18 June 2018 Latos body-slammed an opposing player and several punches were thrown from various players during the brawl that calmed after about a minute. Jimmy Hascup, USA TODAY, "Former MLB pitcher Mat Latos incites benches-clearing brawl in independent league game," 10 June 2018 Just the prospect of a political government calmed markets Thursday. Colleen Barry, The Christian Science Monitor, "Italy forms western Europe's first populist government," 1 June 2018 May met with Conservative lawmakers in a packed room at Parliament, in a bid to calm the feverish atmosphere in the deeply divided party. Danica Kirka, The Seattle Times, "Boris Johnson quits as UK’s May faces mounting Brexit crisis," 10 July 2018 Foy, dressed in drag for his next scene, attempted to calm the increasingly agitated audience. Francine Uenuma, Smithsonian, "The Iroquois Theater Disaster Killed Hundreds and Changed Fire Safety Forever," 12 June 2018 The unfolding disaster is unpredictable, and may take a very long time to calm down enough to allow residents to return. Alan Taylor, The Atlantic, "Photos of Kilauea's Newest Lava Fissures on Hawaii's Big Island," 6 May 2018 The couple made it to the Austin Boulevard stop and headed to the Topper’s Restaurant & Cocktail Lounge in the 300 block of North Austin Boulevard for a drink to calm their nerves. Chicago Tribune, "Rage, riots, ruin," 9 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Ingredients like colloidal oatmeal and allantoin also calm irritation, especially around my nose and cheeks. Emily Rekstis, SELF, "This Tinted Moisturizer Actually Provides Great Coverage," 8 Nov. 2018 Keep your cool and calm their jitters by giving them a warm hi and a quick hello hug. Seventeen, "7 Tips to Rock Your First Date!," 30 Oct. 2018 The Queen first visited Tonga in 1953, in a whirlwind tour of the Commonwealth nations that makes Harry and Meghan’s current royal tour seem relatively calm. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "How Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's Visit to Tonga Compares to The Queen's 50 Years Ago," 25 Oct. 2018 The gel-like formula — which smells fresh in a minty, herbal kind of way — contains the antioxidant niacinamide to sooth skin immediately and calm redness over time. Elizabeth Siegel, Allure, "The October 2018 Allure Beauty Box," 1 Oct. 2018 Swartz’s confidently calm demeanor and obvious talent appealed to Williams, and an internship was offered. Steven Stolman, ELLE Decor, "How Elizabeth Swartz Rose From Intern to Partner at Bunny Williams," 14 Aug. 2018 Lake said Connor stayed calm and relayed instructions to his mother, Christie. Ben Brasch, ajc, "9-year-old Cobb boy honored for saving mom’s life with 911 operator," 15 June 2018 Today Shotgun Eddy rents small rafts and funyaks (inflatable kayaks) for trips through calm and not-so-calm sections of the Wolf River. Chelsey Lewis, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Whitewater rafting on the Wolf River is a wild thrill," 14 June 2018 Winds are calm and lows end up mainly in the mid- to upper 60s. David Streit, Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Seasonably warm today with a stray shower possible; more humid this weekend," 12 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

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

Verb

see calm entry 1

Adjective

see calm entry 1

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Statistics for calm

Last Updated

11 Nov 2018

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, 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
calmness noun

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Comments on calm

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