en·​gulf in-ˈgəlf How to pronounce engulf (audio)
engulfed; engulfing; engulfs

transitive verb

: to flow over and enclose : overwhelm
the mounting seas threatened to engulf the island
: to take in (food) by or as if by flowing over and enclosing
engulfment noun

Examples of engulf in a Sentence

The valley was engulfed in a thick fog. high waves from the hurricane engulfed large areas of the coastal community
Recent Examples on the Web West’s heat wave stretches to second week Heat alerts engulf more than 130 million Americans on both coasts, but the brunt of the heat is still impacting the West, where communities have been baking under high temperatures for at least two weeks. Elizabeth Wolfe, CNN, 10 July 2024 Worries about Black voter turnout The turmoil engulfing the Democratic Party comes at a moment when party officials were already anxious about turnout among Black voters, especially Black women. Amber Ferguson, Washington Post, 7 July 2024 The blaze was one of thousands that engulfed an area larger than Greece and marked the worst wildfire season in Canadian history. Melanie Stetson Freeman, The Christian Science Monitor, 5 July 2024 Firefighters responded to reports of a blast and found the RV engulfed in flames, with three men conscious and alert but badly burned. David Matthews, New York Daily News, 3 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for engulf 

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

Word History

First Known Use

1555, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of engulf was in 1555

Dictionary Entries Near engulf

Cite this Entry

“Engulf.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/engulf. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


en·​gulf in-ˈgəlf How to pronounce engulf (audio)
: to flow over and enclose : overwhelm
engulfment noun

More from Merriam-Webster on engulf

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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