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

That clash ended a nearly two-week period of relative calm that saw some standoffs, but not the use of tear gas. Austin Ramzy, BostonGlobe.com, "Hong Kong officer fires shot, and police use water cannons at protest," 25 Aug. 2019 That clash ended a nearly two-week period of relative calm that saw some standoffs, but not the use of tear gas. Austin Ramzy, New York Times, "Hong Kong Officer Fires Shot, and Police Use Water Cannons at Protest," 25 Aug. 2019 And yet, Gregory studiously avoids some of the delicious angst of her previous novels, instead instilling Alinor with an internal calm that dulls the edges of the book’s high stakes. Maureen Lee Lenker, EW.com, "Tidelands is a dull, dour misstep from Philippa Gregory: EW review," 21 Aug. 2019 Reuters/Ann Wang Hong Kong got a rare moment of calm this past weekend, when not a single canister of tear gas was fired—a rarity in a city where the use of the chemical has quickly become normalized over the past 11 weeks of protests. Mary Hui, Quartz, "Hong Kong’s moment of calm is in danger of being squandered," 20 Aug. 2019 Last week, many stock indexes around the world struck their lowest levels this year, before a late rally suggested some calm was returning to the markets in what is a traditionally low-volume time of the year. Alex Veiga, USA TODAY, "Tech stocks power solid gains on Wall Street: Dow, S&P 500 jump up," 19 Aug. 2019 There's something special about the South American swagger on the ball, a confidence and calm which is hard to come by on an island where Sam Allardyce is considered a footballing genius. SI.com, "Douglas Luiz: 5 Reasons Why the Brazilian Youngster Is the Coolest Signing This Transfer Window," 18 Aug. 2019 Aiden needs a family that is knowledgeable about trauma and can provide a calm and supportive environment for him. Boys & Girls Aid, oregonlive.com, "Aiden, 9, hopes to live among trees or in the country with a family that likes bugs: A Home of Their Own," 10 Aug. 2019 In August, the oxygen levels decline when Lake Erie is calm, and baitfish move up on the oxygen-rich shallow structure to feed, despite the warmer waters. D'arcy Egan, cleveland.com, "Lake Erie walleye on the move, but trophy fish still being caught: Aug. 9 Fishing Report," 9 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In fact, Porteous’ Studio would make a pretty inspiring place to write your own bestseller—the space has a wonderfully calming effect on the mind, despite being in the thick of the action. Rick Jordan, Condé Nast Traveler, "My Favorite Airbnb in Edinburgh: A Minimalist Haven in Old Town," 6 Sep. 2019 Those include testing traffic-calming measures that force drivers to slow down when turning left and analyzing whether to prohibit right turns on red lights. Heather Knight, SFChronicle.com, "Deaths on SF’s streets are up. Traffic enforcement is down. ‘It’s hard to believe these aren’t related’," 30 Aug. 2019 In order to create additional family space, even with an open floor plan, Caan cornered off a little section of the kitchen for a calming dining nook facing the water. Nikhita Mahtani, House Beautiful, "How to Budget for a Second Home—Without Sacrificing Style," 29 Aug. 2019 Harry Maguire slotted in straightaway in central defense following his record £80 million move from Leicester City and provided a calming presence in the back after an early shot by Tammy Abraham rocked the post. SI.com, "Wolverhampton vs Manchester United Live Stream, TV Channel: Watch Premier League," 19 Aug. 2019 Once the practices are learned, students can practice the calming exercises on their own when needed, Wagner says. Allison Bagley, Houston Chronicle, "Houston-area schools adopt mindfulness practices to increase learning," 31 July 2019 Watching the creative process — helped along by the calming timbre of his voice — was hypnotic. Gieson Cacho, The Mercury News, "Preview: Painting happy little trees in ‘Concrete Genie’ reminds me of Bob Ross," 30 July 2019 Each track off the album explores different methods of mind control, and this one features vocal samples from a calming hypnosis meditation. Kat Bein, Billboard, "The 10 Best Rezz Songs," 23 July 2019 The neutral finishes are meant to be a calming backdrop for student work, administrators said. Emma Kate Fittes, Indianapolis Star, "Take a sneak peek inside HSE's new Southeastern Elementary School," 22 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

What was your message to him prior to the game and throughout the game, that really tried to keep him calm and help him? James Crepea | The Oregonian/oregonlive, oregonlive, "What Gus Malzahn, Auburn players said after Tigers came back to beat Oregon Ducks in closing seconds," 1 Sep. 2019 What was your message to him prior to the game and throughout the game, that really tried to keep him calm and help him? Tom Green | Tgreen@al.com, al, "What Gus Malzahn said about Auburn’s wild 27-21 win against Oregon," 1 Sep. 2019 For the past week the territory has been relatively calm, with a rare lull in the barrages of tear-gas. The Economist, "The turmoil in Hong Kong stems in part from its unaffordable housing," 22 Aug. 2019 Local politicians had urged Lam to respond to protesters’ efforts to keep demonstrations calm this past weekend, by offering something specific as an act of good faith. Mary Hui, Quartz, "Hong Kong’s moment of calm is in danger of being squandered," 20 Aug. 2019 When not pursuing seagulls, Bollo perches on Feliciano’s gloved arm with a hood over his eyes to keep him calm. Ben Brazil, Daily Pilot, "Falconers keep Orange County from being overrun by birds," 8 Aug. 2019 Once outside, Hall saw people frozen in place and tried to keep them calm while others tended to the wounded. CBS News, "Army specialist recounts being in the crosshairs of El Paso shooter: "Fight or flight"," 5 Aug. 2019 What to do if you are caught in an avalanche Remain calm. Jenny Howard, National Geographic, "Avalanche safety tips and preparation," 5 Aug. 2019 Brown fired questions at Cephus, who remained calm and answered them clearly. Lawrence Andrea, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Ex-Badgers player Quintez Cephus found not guilty of two counts of sexual assault," 2 Aug. 2019

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

2 Sep 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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