\ ˈkəsp How to pronounce cusp (audio) \

Definition of cusp

: point, apex: such as
a : a point of transition (as from one historical period to the next) : turning point also : edge, verge on the cusp of stardom … you're on the cusp between heat exhaustion and life-threatening heatstroke. — Mark Jannot
b : either horn of a crescent moon
c : a fixed point on a mathematical curve at which a point tracing the curve would exactly reverse its direction of motion
d : an ornamental pointed projection formed by or arising from the intersection of two arcs or foils (see foil entry 2 sense 4)
e(1) : a point on the grinding surface of a tooth
(2) : a fold or flap of a cardiac valve

Illustration of cusp

Illustration of cusp

1 cusp d

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Other Words from cusp

cuspate \ ˈkə-​ˌspāt How to pronounce cusp (audio) , -​spət \ adjective
cusped \ ˈkəspt How to pronounce cusp (audio) \ adjective

Examples of cusp in a Sentence

the cusp of a tooth medical researchers who are on the cusp of a major breakthrough
Recent Examples on the Web All In for the Gambler is gleaned from the epic tribute concert that was held on Oct. 25, 2017, in Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on the cusp of the superstar's retirement. Nancy Kruh,, 22 Sep. 2021 Cruz's Janis, a photographer on the cusp of 40, and 17-year-old Ana (Milena Smit). Leah Greenblatt,, 22 Sep. 2021 This past week a pair of announcements provided a glimpse of how two diverse sectors, steel manufacturing and finance, may be on the cusp of being able to do things with quantum computers that were until now impossible. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, 22 Sep. 2021 Last June, just as the group was on the cusp of a sonic evolution, Groggs died, at thirty-two. Sheldon Pearce, The New Yorker, 21 Sep. 2021 Conceived as an inducement to moderation, bipartisanship sits on the cusp of delivering a final victory to the ideologues of the right. Osita Nwanevu, The New Republic, 20 Sep. 2021 Ether, a competitor to bitcoin, is on the cusp of transitioning to a new mining method called proof-of-stake which is far more energy-efficient than the proof-of-work principle used by bitcoin and can be performed on regular computers. Tim Mcdonnell, Quartz, 19 Sep. 2021 The graduate transfer from Georgia Tech was on the cusp of making an impact there before being sidelined by a foot and shoulder injuries. San Diego Union-Tribune, 17 Sep. 2021 There already is a small, low-observable, robotic tanker on the cusp of U.S. military service. David Axe, Forbes, 16 Sep. 2021

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

1585, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cusp

Latin cuspis point

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Dictionary Entries Near cusp



cusparia bark

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Last Updated

25 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Cusp.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for cusp



English Language Learners Definition of cusp

: a pointed end or part where two curves meet


\ ˈkəsp How to pronounce cusp (audio) \

Kids Definition of cusp

: a point or pointed end the cusp of a tooth


\ ˈkəsp How to pronounce cusp (audio) \

Medical Definition of cusp

1 : a point on the grinding surface of a tooth
2 : a fold or flap of a cardiac valve

Other Words from cusp

cuspal \ ˈkəs-​pəl How to pronounce cusp (audio) \ adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on cusp

Nglish: Translation of cusp for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about cusp


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