\ˈchärm \

Definition of charm 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the chanting or reciting of a magic spell : incantation

b : a practice or expression believed to have magic power

2 : something worn about the person to ward off evil or ensure good fortune : amulet wore a rabbit's foot as a good-luck charm

3a : a trait that fascinates, allures, or delights the charm of this imaginative story

b : a physical grace (see grace entry 1 sense 3) or attraction used in plural her feminine charms

c : compelling attractiveness the island possessed great charm

4 : a small ornament worn on a bracelet or chain Her sister presented her with a sterling silver charm for her bracelet.

5 : a fundamental quark that has an electric charge of +²/₃ and a measured energy of approximately 1.5 GeV also : the flavor characterizing this particle


charmed; charming; charms

Definition of charm (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to affect by or as if by magic : compel

b : to please, soothe, or delight by compelling attraction charms customers with his suave manner

2 : to endow with or as if with supernatural powers by means of charms also : to protect by or as if by spells, charms, or supernatural influences

3 : to control (an animal) typically by charms (such as the playing of music) charm a snake

intransitive verb

1 : to practice magic and enchantment witches having the power to charm

2 : to have the effect of a charm : fascinate The village charms by its quaintness.

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Other Words from charm


charmless \-​ləs \ adjective


charmer \ˈchär-​mər \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for charm

Synonyms: Noun

amulet, fetish (also fetich), mascot, mojo, periapt, phylactery, talisman

Synonyms: Verb

allure, beguile, bewitch, captivate, enchant, fascinate, kill, magnetize, wile, witch [archaic]

Antonyms: Noun

hoodoo, jinx

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Choose the Right Synonym for charm


attract, allure, charm, captivate, fascinate, enchant mean to draw another by exerting a powerful influence. attract applies to any degree or kind of ability to exert influence over another. students attracted by the school's locale allure implies an enticing by what is fair, pleasing, or seductive. an alluring smile charm implies the power of casting a spell over the person or thing affected and so compelling a response charmed by their hospitality , but it may, like captivate, suggest no more than evoking delight or admiration. her performances captivated audiences fascinate suggests a magical influence and tends to stress the ineffectiveness of attempts to resist. a story that continues to fascinate children enchant is perhaps the strongest of these terms in stressing the appeal of the agent and the degree of delight evoked in the subject. hopelessly enchanted by her beauty

Examples of charm in a Sentence


He keeps a horseshoe as a good luck charm. He fell under the spell of her charms. The resort has many charms. The inn has a quaint charm. The island possesses great charm. The new curtains add charm to the room. The seaside location is a big part of the house's charm. He won her over with his charm.


The snake was charmed by the music. He was known for his ability to charm voters. He charmed the committee into approving his proposal. I was charmed by the cozy country inn.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

And the story of the Grinch has not lost any of its charm. Alissa Wilkinson, Vox, "Benedict Cumberbatch voices the Grinch in the new movie. It’s pretty fun!," 9 Nov. 2018 Bermuda is known for its pink-sand beaches and bright blue water, and one of the things that separates it from similar locales: its old-world British charm. Sam Dangremond, Town & Country, "How Bermuda's Legendary Coral Beach & Tennis Club Is Welcoming a New Crowd," 24 Aug. 2018 Artemis wasn't as well received as Weir's first novel, but like The Martian, much of its charm lies is the world-building that hews as closely as possible to scientific fact. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "'Artemis' by Andy Weir Is Getting the Movie Treatment," 17 July 2018 Prince Louis Middleton wore a white McQueen look again, proving third time's a charm. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "How Prince Louis' Christening Photos Compare to George and Charlotte's," 15 July 2018 Tiffany Haddish, comedian and host of the MTV Movie and TV Awards, thinks the fourth time's a charm! Carly Mallenbaum, USA TODAY, "Tyler Perry surprises Tiffany Haddish with a new Tesla: 'I cried so hard'," 8 July 2018 For the Beauties & The Beasts team in the Maxe Clarke Coed Volleyball League, the third might have been the charm but the fourth was fantastic. Emmett Hall,, "Maxe Clarke Coed Volleyball League crowns its team champions," 24 June 2018 Tom Loftus, Louisville Courier Journal Third time's a charm, maybe. Thomas Novelly, The Courier-Journal, "Anti-poverty activists plan another protest at Kentucky Capitol today," 18 June 2018 If the third time is a charm, Seal is hoping his third time at Ravinia this month will be just what his fans and listeners want to hear. Darcel Rockett,, "Seal's 'Standards' is coming to Ravinia," 13 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The animation itself charms: the grays and dark hues of human life in the USSR contrast brilliantly with all the color found in these animals and their new home planet. Nathan Mattise, Ars Technica, "Laika: Forget historic tragedy, this first space dog saves alien planets," 14 Oct. 2018 Princess Diana charmed fans with them, Princess Anne hated them, Kate Middleton has a knack for them, and Meghan Markle only started doing them at her first royal engagement last December. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Why Royals Personally Greet the Public During Engagements," 23 Sep. 2018 Drew, a twentysomething educator living in Florida, did just that, charming his matches with poems that were also acrostics spelling out such Tinder-favorite pickup lines as SEND NUDES and WANNA SMASH. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Why Facebook banned Alex Jones — and Twitter didn’t," 11 Aug. 2018 One North Carolina toddler’s fearless attempt at a dive into a backyard pool may have been a total flop, but the two-year-old’s hilarious belly flop has charmed the internet. Janine Puhak, Fox News, "North Carolina toddler’s belly flop goes viral," 22 July 2018 Meghan visibly charmed the Queen during their trip, which began with an overnight stay aboard the Royal Train. Maura Hohman,, "Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton Are Going on Their First Solo Outing Together!," 12 July 2018 On paper, the side looks charmed: plenty of talent; a strong pedigree; one of the best players of all time for their captain. Brad Rickman, Condé Nast Traveler, "The Loneliness of the American Soccer Fan," 15 June 2018 The vast collection of evaluations, which are meant to hone their opinion-writing skills, is charming to say the least, with each restaurant racking up four to five stars per critique. Steve Annear,, " to shut down accounts that third-graders use to perfect their food-writing skills," 15 June 2018 All birds are charming in their own way, and deserve respect as living creatures in this world. John Kelly, Washington Post, "It’s going to be hard for me to complain about other people’s leaf blowers," 6 May 2018

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


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


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

History and Etymology for charm


Middle English charme, from Anglo-French, from Latin carmen song, from canere to sing — more at chant


see charm entry 1

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Statistics for charm

Last Updated

6 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for charm

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

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More Definitions for charm



English Language Learners Definition of charm

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that is believed to have magic powers and especially to prevent bad luck

: a small object that is worn on a chain or bracelet

: a quality that causes someone or something to be very likeable : an attractive quality



English Language Learners Definition of charm (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put a spell on (someone or something)

: to cause (someone) to like you or to do what you want by being nice, friendly, etc.

: to attract (someone) by being beautiful or welcoming


\ˈchärm \

Kids Definition of charm

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an action, word, or phrase believed to have magic powers

2 : something believed to keep away evil and bring good luck

3 : a small decorative object worn on a chain or bracelet

4 : a quality that attracts and pleases


charmed; charming

Kids Definition of charm (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to affect or influence by or as if by a magic spell He charmed the group into supporting him.

2 : fascinate sense 2, delight The penguins were all charmed by the sparkling lights and the confusion of the city below.— Richard and Florence Atwater, Mr. Popper's Penguins

3 : to attract by being graceful, beautiful, or welcoming I was charmed by the countryside.

4 : to protect by or as if by a charm She leads a charmed life.

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More from Merriam-Webster on charm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with charm

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for charm

Spanish Central: Translation of charm

Nglish: Translation of charm for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of charm for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about charm

Comments on charm

What made you want to look up charm? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a nest or breeding place

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