claus·​tro·​pho·​bic | \ ˌklȯ-strə-ˈfō-bik \

Definition of claustrophobic

1 : affected with or inclined to claustrophobia
2 : inducing or suggesting claustrophobia

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Other Words from claustrophobic

claustrophobically \ ˌklȯ-​strə-​ˈfō-​bi-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb

Examples of claustrophobic in a Sentence

The theater can be a little claustrophobic when it's full. She doesn't go in elevators because she is claustrophobic.

Recent Examples on the Web

Tourneur masterfully evokes psychological unease, a mansion’s claustrophobic interior and life in turn-of-the-century Manhattan. Kristin M. Jones, WSJ, "Where Truth Is Elusive and Chaos Is Near," 11 Dec. 2018 Many of its scenes play out in the claustrophobic precinct of the confessional box, a pre-modern version of the interrogation room. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: Shrovetide Confessions," 13 Dec. 2018 There’s nothing too luxurious about hurtling through the air in a claustrophobic metal tube, eating stale snack mix and inching away from your strange neighbor’s shoeless feet. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "This Is the World’s Most Luxurious Airline," 17 July 2018 But, the terrors of the past aren’t what brings Camille back to her sweaty, claustrophobic hometown of the fictional Wind Gap, Missouri., "All The Clues To Figuring Out The Identity Of The Sharp Objects Killer," 9 July 2018 His palette of blacks, whites, grays, and browns and shots of claustrophobic interiors reflect a mood of oppression and melancholy. Peter Keough,, "Rachel Weisz empowers ‘Disobedience’," 2 May 2018 Crawling through it was simultaneously claustrophobic and soothing, the expanse of the identical mattresses like a plush, monochromatic play space or a padded chamber turned on its side and squished. Chloe Schama, Vogue, "Paola Pivi’s Transporting Exhibition Is a Whimsical Comment on Dark Realities," 15 Nov. 2018 Haunted-house stories naturally lend themselves to claustrophobic settings, ideally suited for movies, where audiences can be progressively more traumatized, knowing that freedom is just a couple of hours away. Bryan Bishop, The Verge, "Netflix’s Haunting of Hill House is like This Is Us wrapped in a gothic ghost story," 28 Sep. 2018 In that instant, the cave turned from a fun place to seek new things into a claustrophobic and confusing labyrinth. Chris Peterman, Ars Technica, "Risky Thailand cave rescue relied on talent, luck—and on sticking to the rules," 22 July 2018

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

circa 1889, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for claustrophobic

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for claustrophobic

The first known use of claustrophobic was circa 1889

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English Language Learners Definition of claustrophobic

of a room, space, etc. : not having enough space for people to feel comfortable : causing claustrophobia

: having a fear of being in closed or small spaces : having claustrophobia

: not having or providing enough freedom


claus·​tro·​pho·​bic | \ ˌklȯ-strə-ˈfō-bik \

Medical Definition of claustrophobic

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : suffering from or inclined to claustrophobia
2 : inducing or suggesting claustrophobia

Other Words from claustrophobic

claustrophobically \ -​bi-​k(ə-​)lē \ adverb



Medical Definition of claustrophobic (Entry 2 of 2)

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More from Merriam-Webster on claustrophobic

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with claustrophobic

Spanish Central: Translation of claustrophobic

Nglish: Translation of claustrophobic for Spanish Speakers

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someone who never drinks alcohol

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