co·​los·​sal | \ kə-ˈlä-səl How to pronounce colossal (audio) \

Definition of colossal

1 : of, relating to, or resembling a colossus colossal statues
2 : of a bulk, extent, power, or effect approaching or suggesting the stupendous or incredible colossal rock formations colossal stellar explosions
3 : of an exceptional or astonishing degree a colossal failure a colossal bore colossal ambition

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Other Words from colossal

colossally \ kə-​ˈlä-​sə-​lē How to pronounce colossally (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for colossal

enormous, immense, huge, vast, gigantic, colossal, mammoth mean exceedingly large. enormous and immense both suggest an exceeding of all ordinary bounds in size or amount or degree, but enormous often adds an implication of abnormality or monstrousness. an enormous expense an immense shopping mall huge commonly suggests an immensity of bulk or amount. incurred a huge debt vast usually suggests immensity of extent. the vast Russian steppes gigantic stresses the contrast with the size of others of the same kind. a gigantic sports stadium colossal applies especially to a human creation of stupendous or incredible dimensions. a colossal statue of Lincoln mammoth suggests both hugeness and ponderousness of bulk. a mammoth boulder

Examples of colossal in a Sentence

a colossal statue of the town's founder

Recent Examples on the Web

Doing so, according to the game’s author, would set Bezos back approximately $58.2 billion—a colossal sum, but one that would likely make no meaningful difference either to the man himself or many, many generations of his descendants. Natasha Frost, Quartz, "Billionaire philanthropy is being disrupted," 15 July 2019 Spanning some 240 feet, King Louis XIV’s elegant ballroom adorned with colossal arched mirrors, gilded statues, and dazzling chandeliers takes spectators waltzing through a masterclass of mid-17th-century splendor. And Gareth Jones, National Geographic, "Here’s why Versailles will blow your mind—and how to visit," 9 July 2019 Confusion reigns Almost from the start, the arrangement was doomed to escalate into a colossal battle of egos as Smith and Perot faced ambiguous lines of power. Jamie L. Lareau, Detroit Free Press, "How Ross Perot became GM's biggest shareholder — and a bitter battle took off," 9 July 2019 The costs of the gargantuan task of renovating the monument won't be known until Spring 2020, but they are bound to be as colossal as the cathedral — and current headaches over payments. NBC News, "No sign Notre Dame fire was criminal, Paris prosecutor says," 26 June 2019 Since the early ‘90s, the British designer has worked on some of the most iconic consumer technology products of our time, and he will long be remembered as having had a colossal impact on modern industrial design and software aesthetics. Nick Statt, The Verge, "Here are Jony Ive’s most important — and indulgent — Apple product videos," 27 June 2019 An entree of pork tenderloin seemed to be an entire loin — two colossal cylinders of roast pork, with a port-wine reduction, sweet-potato polenta, and the fragrant garnish of an orange gremolata. Rand Richards Cooper,, "The Federal, Agawam," 25 June 2019 Naming your abuser is a colossal act of defiance, especially when your abuser’s entire personal brand is about getting away with it. Laurie Penny, The New Republic, "Why It Matters How Powerful Men Treat Women," 24 June 2019 Photo: Monica Almeida/The New York Times Robert Therrien, whose lifelong fascination with household objects like tables and chairs and pots and pans led him to recreate them as colossal sculptures, died on June 17 at his home in Los Angeles. Richard Sandomir, New York Times, "Robert Therrien, Sculptor, Dies at 71; He Made the Mundane Monumental," 24 June 2019

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

1664, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for colossal

see colossus

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Statistics for colossal

Last Updated

18 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for colossal

The first known use of colossal was in 1664

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More Definitions for colossal



English Language Learners Definition of colossal

: very large or great


co·​los·​sal | \ kə-ˈlä-səl How to pronounce colossal (audio) \

Kids Definition of colossal

: very large : huge a colossal success She gave the ball a colossal heave.

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More from Merriam-Webster on colossal

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with colossal

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for colossal

Spanish Central: Translation of colossal

Nglish: Translation of colossal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of colossal for Arabic Speakers

Comments on colossal

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an act or instance of editing or removing

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