em·​bar·​rass·​ing | \ im-ˈber-ə-siŋ How to pronounce embarrassing (audio) , -ˈba-rə-\

Definition of embarrassing

: causing a feeling of self-conscious confusion and distress : causing embarrassment an embarrassing error The official was ever so polite, and ever so sorry, but the rule was strict, and he could not let us in. It was very embarrassing, for many eyes were on us.— Mark Twain

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Other Words from embarrassing

embarrassingly \ im-​ˈber-​ə-​siŋ-​lē How to pronounce embarrassingly (audio) , -​ˈba-​rə-​ \ adverb
an embarrassingly messy house

Examples of embarrassing in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Feinstein, in an apparent attempt to avoid what could be an embarrassing loss, on Tuesday called for unity and urged party leaders to decline to endorse anyone at the upcoming executive board meeting where the endorsement question will be decided. Phil Willon, latimes.com, "Feinstein and De León enter round two in fight over California Democratic Party endorsement," 4 July 2018 In a new interview, Jenna Coleman shared her most embarrassing moment. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Victoria Actress Jenna Coleman's Most Embarrassing Moment Is So Relatable," 19 Feb. 2019 But what once was a cute aversion to the kitchen is now downright embarrassing. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "How I Conquered the Kitchen and Finally Started Cooking for Myself," 25 Jan. 2019 The Lines in early March, the interview Bob Ley conducted with both Listenbee and his attorney was more embarrassing for the plaintiff than destructive for Patterson and TCU. Mac Engel, star-telegram, "HBO Real Sports piece on TCU won't be a good look... for the school or Gary Patterson | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 23 Apr. 2018 Some of the early opinions became embarrassing and were quietly deleted. David Bauder, The Seattle Times, "Some journalists wonder if their profession is tweet-crazy," 29 Jan. 2019 Of course, having these conversations requires a lot of work that’s often uncomfortable, awkward, and embarrassing. Lux Alptraum, The Verge, "Online porn filters will never work," 26 Nov. 2018 Bush attempted to barnstorm the country in support of privatization, but that only drew more attention to an embarrassing and unpopular situation. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "The time Nancy Pelosi saved Social Security," 21 Nov. 2018 Learn more about Mackenzie’s firsts — the good, the bad, and the embarrassing — in the video below: Get the Teen Vogue Take. Emma Sarran Webster, Teen Vogue, "Mackenzie Ziegler Shares Her Most Memorable and Embarrassing Firsts," 14 Sep. 2018

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

1778, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

14 Mar 2019

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The first known use of embarrassing was in 1778

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to corrupt or become corrupted

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