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damned; damning ˈda-miŋ How to pronounce damn (audio)

transitive verb

: to condemn to a punishment or fate
especially : to condemn to hell
: to condemn vigorously and often irascibly for some real or fancied fault or defect
damned the storm for their delay
: to condemn as a failure by public criticism
: to bring ruin on
: to swear at : curse
often used to express annoyance, disgust, or surprise
damn him, he should have been careful
I'll be damned


2 of 3


: the utterance of the word damn as a curse
: a minimum amount or degree (as of care or consideration) : the least bit
don't give a damn


3 of 3

adjective or adverb

: damned
a damn nuisance
ran damn fast
damn well
: beyond doubt or question : certainly
knew damn well what would happen

Examples of damn in a Sentence

Verb But it is functional talk for the purpose of conveying information, not, as often in the case of Waugh, for entertaining his audience, humdrum veracity be damned. Robert Murray Davis, Commonweal, 5 June 2009
Congress demanded an immediate investigation and over the next year held dramatic hearings, launched a variety of inquests, and produced several pounds of reports that condemned FEMA. One report damned the agency as a dumping ground for political appointees … Christopher Cooper & Robert Block, Disaster, 2006
No American war has been more roundly damned than the Mexican. Within months after its outbreak Whigs and abolitionists accused Polk of plotting the ambush on the Rio Grande and misrepresenting the facts in order to stampede the nation into a war of conquest … Walter A. McDougall, Promised Land, Crusader State, 1997
He damned them for their stupidity. damned the car for once again breaking down Noun I don't want to hear about your problems—I just don't give a damn.
Recent Examples on the Web
The Justice Department’s report adds to a growing body of findings damning the slow and chaotic actions of responding officers who lacked training and a clear command structure. Alicia Victoria Lozano, NBC News, 18 Jan. 2024 He’s made horror films before, but this one rebukes the hypocrisies of social progressives and the whole damned better-than-thou global elite. Armond White, National Review, 14 Feb. 2024 Judge Michael Gaffey oversaw the December trial, which featured emotional testimony from Jabbari, damning audio recording of Majors criticizing her and grainy video footage of her in a club after the confrontation. Alexandra Del Rosario, Los Angeles Times, 6 Feb. 2024 The court’s order is, despite its apparent moderation, damning. David Kaye, Foreign Affairs, 26 Jan. 2024 Editor Ian Olds makes these connections look easy by juxtaposing informational and newsreel footage with damning talking-head commentary that brings everything together in essay-like fashion. Jourdain Searles, The Hollywood Reporter, 26 Jan. 2024 But damned if these Two Rivers boys aren't all going to try. Andrew Cunningham & Lee Hutchinson, Ars Technica, 1 Sep. 2023 And Kelly’s damning 34-34 record in his first six seasons before Saturday? Bill Plaschke, Los Angeles Times, 17 Dec. 2023 The stunt to win over their disenchanted citizens backfired as songs openly damning the military junta were broadcast throughout the country. Matthew Dursum, SPIN, 20 Nov. 2023
Be prepared to take a sharp inhale at the end of the episode when Betina finally starts to snap out of her Macchiarini fog and actually does some research worth a damn. Vulture, 21 Dec. 2023 The small Central American nation switched alliances from Taiwan to China last month, not long after a Chinese company built a $300 million hydroelectric damn in the country, fully funded by the Chinese government. Clarisa Diaz, Quartz, 27 Apr. 2023 And baseball doesn’t give one damn. Bruce Jenkins, San Francisco Chronicle, 19 Feb. 2022 As a band geek in school, nobody gives a damn. Craig Jenkins, Vulture, 12 July 2022 While the vast majority are eligible for alternate insurance, the level to which they’ll be notified and guided through a process of research and reenrollment is largely a function of whether their state is ideologically and financially invested in giving a damn. Natalie Shure, The New Republic, 22 Feb. 2022 Nobody gives a damn. Bywill Daniel, Fortune, 8 Feb. 2023 Too glam to give a damn. Samantha Olson, Seventeen, 24 Jan. 2023 That's because Reed doesn't give a damn. Mike Freeman, USA TODAY, 22 Jan. 2023
Adjective or adverb
Reply None The simplest way to free up Gmail space is to batch delete just about every damn thing in your inbox. Boone Ashworth Lauren Goode, WIRED, 17 Mar. 2024 Ariana Grande decided to share just one more piece of information about her new album, Eternal Sunshine, before its release next month: A whole damn track list. Jon Blistein, Rolling Stone, 27 Feb. 2024 There's no shortage of love songs — about wanting to be in love, falling in love, falling out of love — and then along came Miley with a song about being fine just loving your damn self. Jason Lamphier, EW.com, 17 Dec. 2023 Photo: Artem Galkin That should be true of theater as a whole — or at least a damn sight more of it — but, for the moment, at least Grygoriv and Razumeiko haven’t misspoken. Sara Holdren, Vulture, 25 Jan. 2024 Avril Lavigne will be bringing her best damn songs from The Best Damn Thing and her six other studios album on the road for the Avril Lavigne: The Greatest Hits tour. Larisha Paul, Rolling Stone, 22 Jan. 2024 The Navy has patriotic leaders, dedicated commanders, and the best damn sailors in the world. Jim Talent, National Review, 6 Jan. 2024 Meanwhile, Sarah Rafferty was fighting for her damn life against the strong winds battering Beverly Hills today. Vulture, 7 Jan. 2024 Wally briefly pops up in the David Lynch television sequel to say philosophical things that make no damn sense while looking like Marlon Brando in The Wild One. Vulture, 15 Dec. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'damn.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Verb, Noun, and Adjective or adverb

Middle English dampnen, from Anglo-French dampner, from Latin damnare, from damnum damage, loss, fine

First Known Use


14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


circa 1625, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective Or Adverb

circa 1708, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of damn was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near damn

Cite this Entry

“Damn.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/damn. Accessed 15 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


1 of 2 verb
: to condemn to a punishment or fate
especially : to condemn to hell
: to condemn as bad or as a failure
: to swear at : curse


2 of 2 noun
: the saying of the word damn as a curse
: the least bit
not worth a damn
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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