con·​tor·​tion·​ist | \ kən-ˈtȯr-sh(ə-)nist How to pronounce contortionist (audio) \

Definition of contortionist

: one who contorts specifically : an acrobat able to twist the body into unusual postures

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Other Words from contortionist

contortionistic \ kən-​ˌtȯr-​shə-​ˈni-​stik How to pronounce contortionistic (audio) \ adjective

Examples of contortionist in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Biden is becoming a conviction contortionist, as with his retreat from 40 years of support for the Hyde amendment. George Will, National Review, "How Can Presidential Candidates Be So Silly?," 7 July 2019 Biden is becoming a conviction contortionist, as with his retreat from 40 years of support for the Hyde Amendment. George Will, Twin Cities, "George Will: How can presidential candidates be so silly?," 7 July 2019 There are jugglers, balancing acts, pole climbers, a contortionist. Christopher Arnott,, "Cirque du Soleil’s ‘Luzia’: A watery wonderland under the big top making its way to Hartford’s Market Street," 6 June 2019 Luzia’’ — often exceed the seeming limits of human possibility (including a genuinely cringe-inducing performance by a contortionist). Don Aucoin,, "A Cirque du Soleil show that’s as interested in ‘Ahh’ as ‘Wow’," 29 June 2018 Most are in an inconvenient location with a black faceplate that is near impossible to find without being a contortionist in a cramped seat., "Letters: Here's an easy way to make a San Diego bike trip even easier," 1 July 2018 The event draws more than 150 different breweries together, alongside entertainers including contortionists, sword swallowers, jugglers, stilt walkers, and more, all entertaining on one main stage. Grace Dickinson,, "Justin Timberlake, Philadelphia Burger Brawl, 11th Wanamaker Court Organ Day, and other events happening in Philadelphia, June 1-7," 31 May 2018 Thus sets in motion a series of dance performances from ballet to contortionist backed by different pieces of music including opera and spoken word. Trevor Fraser,, "Review: Luna - Fringe 2018," 14 May 2018 See Caribbean dancers, contortionists, acrobats, a hire-wire act, teeterboard, a giant wheel, Russian bar, elephants, motorcycles, and a mixed animal act featuring zebras and camels under the big top at Miramar Regional Park, 16801 Miramar Parkway. Jennifer Jhon, South Florida Parenting, "Egg hunts bring sweet fun to South Florida families this weekend," 22 Mar. 2018

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

1844, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for contortionist

Last Updated

12 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for contortionist

The first known use of contortionist was in 1844

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More Definitions for contortionist



English Language Learners Definition of contortionist

: a performer who twists his or her body into unusual positions

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