\ ˈchärm How to pronounce charm (audio) \

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 \ ˈchärm-​ləs How to pronounce charm (audio) \ adjective


charmer \ ˈchär-​mər How to pronounce charm (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for charm

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Noun

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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

Noun 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. Verb 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 With a heady mix of cockiness, wheedling, charm and vulnerability, Jordan embodies the complexity of an essential component of humanity — the need to belong to something. Matthew J. Palm,, "‘Six Degrees’ engrosses, entertains with big questions | Review," 10 May 2021 Rosick admirably fuses Jamie’s egoism, charm and ambition. oregonlive, "The latest from Broadway Rose is a cozy fit for your living room (‘The Last Five Years’ review)," 27 Apr. 2021 Since joining the platform in 2015, Dobrik’s charm and cheeky personality have quickly shot him to YouTube superstardom. Florence O'connor, Vulture, "A Timeline of the David Dobrik Allegations and Controversies," 22 Apr. 2021 Her creativity resulted in a coastal cottage bursting with charm. Grace Haynes, Southern Living, "These St. Simons Island Homeowners Focused on Their Front Yard for the Best Reason," 21 Apr. 2021 Dog House Diner lacks in size makes up in charm and nostalgia. cleveland, "10 places to get a hot dog in Greater Cleveland this baseball season (besides Progressive Field)," 13 Apr. 2021 Designed in 1929, this residence features a slate roof, leaded-glass windows and solid mahogany paneling, blending historical charm and modern amenities. Dallas News, "Market strong on $1 million-plus homes," 11 Apr. 2021 While offering impressive richness, this displays a great deal of charm and finesse, and is more refined than many examples of Blanc de Noirs. Tom Hyland, Forbes, "New Releases From Champagne," 11 Apr. 2021 That Milioti’s unassuming charm and approachable beauty could help resurrect the ‘90s rom-com era. Neha Prakash, Marie Claire, "Happily (N)ever After With Cristin Milioti," 5 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Both men are more transactional than ideological, possess a healthy belief in their own abilities to charm and tend to be hyper-focused on the zero sum of politics (i.e., winning and losing). New York Times, "Kevin McCarthy, Four Months After Jan. 6, Still on Defensive Over Trump," 25 Apr. 2021 Young, effortlessly charming as the sharpshooter and gambling addict who tries too hard to charm, is the clear standout. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, "Review: Netflix's 'Shadow and Bone' is a good fantasy adaptation that could have been so much better," 23 Apr. 2021 Season one, with its 10 episodes that are each well paced over about 30 minutes, will charm even those with the shortest attention spans. Kendra Nordin Beato, The Christian Science Monitor, "Food shows offer all of the fun, none of the cleanup," 12 Apr. 2021 Our edit of spring clothes for kids boasts playful prints, punchy colors, and lasting accessories sure to charm everyone on the playground. Rickie De Sole, Vogue, "All the Things Needed to Refresh Your Little One’s Wardrobe for Spring," 16 Apr. 2021 By contrast, there is little limit to the diversity of insects themselves, a spectrum celebrated in an set of new books that could charm the most committed insectophobe. David P. Barash, WSJ, "What to Read This Spring: The Best Books on Nature," 8 Apr. 2021 Storm chasers show up from who knows where and charm desperate homeowners in need of a new roof out of that first insurance check. Dave Lieber, Dallas News, "Need cash? Slap a magnet sign on your truck and say you’re a roofer. Forget the roof. This is Texas.," 8 Apr. 2021 From his boisterous entrance, Kaluuya seems prepared to charm. Matthew Love, Vulture, "Saturday Night Live Recap: Daniel Kaluuya Wants You … Vaxxed," 5 Apr. 2021 This topsy-turvy history might explain, in part, the field’s inability to charm the public. Sam Kean, WSJ, "‘Einstein’s Fridge’ Review: Heated Arguments," 23 Mar. 2021

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

Noun and Verb

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

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Time Traveler for charm

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for charm

Last Updated

14 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Charm.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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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 How to pronounce charm (audio) \

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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