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

Definition of damn

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to condemn to a punishment or fate especially : to condemn to hell
2a : to condemn vigorously and often irascibly for some real or fancied fault or defect damned the storm for their delay
b : to condemn as a failure by public criticism
3 : to bring ruin on
4 : to swear at : curse often used to express annoyance, disgust, or surprise damn him, he should have been carefulI'll be damned



Definition of damn (Entry 2 of 3)

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

Definition of damn (Entry 3 of 3)

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

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Examples of damn in a Sentence


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


I don't want to hear about your problems—I just don't give a damn.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Meanwhile, the stats are damning for Premier League sides against La Liga teams. SI.com, "Jose Mourinho 'Received Applause From Sevilla Players' After Congratulating Team for UCL Victory," 15 Mar. 2018 Seriously, who wouldn't want to dig in a place so baroquely decorated, deathly warnings be damned? Tim Heffernan, Popular Mechanics, "Finland's Crazy Plan to Make Nuclear Waste Disappear," 10 May 2012 But after what some criticized as a racist marketing campaign, and what appeared to be damning leaked messages from brand co-founder Stefano Gabbana, the event was abruptly canceled. Rebecca Jennings, Vox, "A Dolce & Gabbana show was canceled after racist online messages leaked," 21 Nov. 2018 Mark Zuckerberg’s response to the NYT’s damning Facebook story proved its point. Casey Newton, The Verge, "How Facebook’s crisis PR firm triggered a PR crisis," 17 Nov. 2018 While Maturin’s Melmoth has simply sold his soul to the devil, Ms. Perry knows that the bargains that really damn us are far more subtle than that. Elizabeth Lowry, WSJ, "‘Melmoth’ Review: The Wanderer Returns," 11 Oct. 2018 Come hell or high water or 90-degree temperatures and biting flies, the show must go on—and smile, damn it. Aimee Levitt, Chicago Reader, "The Tempel Lipizzans show off their mastery of equine ballet," 20 June 2018 Then Trump nominated her to be ambassador to Singapore, but her nomination needed to be withdrawn when damning emails implicated her in the Russia scandal and imperiled her Senate confirmation. James Hohmann, Washington Post, "The Daily 202: Trump may hire multiple cable news personalities as part of shake-up," 16 Mar. 2018 The report, a draft of which was circulated in 2016 by the National Bureau of Economic Research, offers damning evidence that black juveniles bear the brunt of unexpected losses, especially if the judge graduated from LSU. Chelsea Brasted, NOLA.com, "After an LSU football upset, judges give black juveniles longer sentences, study says," 5 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Indeed, public opinion is now so hopelessly cocooned that the president is under investigation for colluding with our primary geopolitical foe and more than half the country doesn’t give a damn. Sean Illing, Vox, "Intellectuals have said democracy is failing for a century. They were wrong.," 20 Dec. 2018 For the most part, conservatives who have had issues with the Trump administration’s agenda have either kept their mouths shut or praised the MAGA agenda with faint damn. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "Koch Brothers To Spend Millions Fighting Against Trump’s Trade War Agenda," 4 June 2018 Here, eight designers remind us of the importance of giving a damn. Brooke Bobb, Vogue, "These Fashion Labels Made Voting Merch and Now They’re Sharing Why They’re Headed to the Polls Tomorrow," 5 Nov. 2018 None of that matters a damn to the leaders of Walker’s pet legislature. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, "Ethics Issues? Just Torpedo the Ethics Committee!," 25 Jan. 2018 What the Spurs do give a damn about is their inability to win on the road lately and an old bugaboo that resurfaced at the Staples Center: porous fourth quarter defense. Tom Orsborn, San Antonio Express-News, "Spurs’ road woes continue with fourth quarter meltdown," 4 Apr. 2018 The reason must be that no one in Microsoft actually gives a damn. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "From Win32 to Cocoa: A Windows user’s would-be conversion to Mac OS, part II," 27 May 2018 Like how to know which damn shoes to wear with your pants. Megan Gustashaw, GQ, "The Perfect Shoes for Every Pair of Pants You Own," 12 Apr. 2018 Fox News doesn’t give a damn about press watchdogs and Pulitzers. Frank Rich, Daily Intelligencer, "Sean Hannity Will Remain Trump’s Shadow Chief of Staff," 19 Apr. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective or adverb

Many of Peterson’s fans reassure themselves that there’s a seam of genius here buried beyond their reach, that there’s so much damn context that even a true believer can only ever see it all through a glass, darkly. Laurie Penny, Longreads, "Peterson’s Complaint," 12 July 2018 Kim Kardashian and Chloë Grace Moretz Last year, Kim posted a nude selfie on Instagram and the internet lost its damn mind. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "8 Celeb Feuds that Will Never, Ever Go Away," 6 Mar. 2019 Luckily, these two don't need February 14 to be damn adorable together. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Will Spend Valentine's Day Apart This Year," 28 Jan. 2019 No man is perfect, that’s for damn sure, and perhaps his pants don’t necessarily need to be either. Brooke Bobb, Vogue, "Could You Love a Man in the Baggy Pants that Took Over the Runways this Season?," 22 Jan. 2019 His main function was to keep the damn politicians—all of whom wanted to get their names in the paper by doing something about the Challenger accident—at bay. Margaret Lazarus Dean, Popular Mechanics, "The Oral History of the Space Shuttle Challenger Disaster," 28 Jan. 2019 Back in the real world, nobody gives a damn what Clyburn’s title is or who the chair or whip of the Democratic caucus is — most people have no idea what any of this means. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "House Democrats don’t need a leader, they need someone to represent them on TV," 20 Nov. 2018 To sweeten the deal, anyone who connects their Microsoft account to the Movies Anywhere service will receive X-Men: Days of Future Past, which is to say, the last mainline, ensemble X-Men movie that was worth a damn. Peter Bright, Ars Technica, "Microsoft adding support for Movies Anywhere, giving away free X-Men movie," 7 Aug. 2018 The housing crisis is worsening and the rent’s too damn high. Diana Budds, Curbed, "Senator Warren has a $450 billion plan to fix the housing crisis," 25 Sep. 2018

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1619, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective or adverb

1775, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for damn

Verb, Noun, and Adjective or adverb

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

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Learn More about damn

Dictionary Entries near damn

dammar pine







Statistics for damn

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for damn

The first known use of damn was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for damn



English Language Learners Definition of damn

 (Entry 1 of 3)

used to show that you are angry or annoyed at a person, thing, or situation
used to say in a forceful way that you do not care about something
: to send (someone) to hell as punishment after death



English Language Learners Definition of damn (Entry 2 of 3)

informal + impolite : anything at all



English Language Learners Definition of damn (Entry 3 of 3)

informal + impolite
used to show that you are angry, annoyed, surprised, etc.


\ ˈdam How to pronounce damn (audio) \
damned; damning

Kids Definition of damn

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to condemn to everlasting punishment especially in hell
2 : to declare to be bad or a failure
3 : to swear at : curse


variants: or damned \ ˈdamd \

Kids Definition of damn (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : very bad the damn weather
2 used to make a statement more forceful These bugs are a damned nuisance.
Hint: This word is considered impolite, and you may offend people by using it.

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More from Merriam-Webster on damn

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with damn

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for damn

Spanish Central: Translation of damn

Comments on damn

What made you want to look up damn? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to mark by some ceremony or observation

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