excess

noun
ex·​cess | \ ik-ˈses How to pronounce excess (audio) , ˈek-ˌses How to pronounce excess (audio) \

Definition of excess

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a : the state or an instance of surpassing usual, proper, or specified limits : superfluity
b : the amount or degree by which one thing or quantity exceeds another an excess of 10 bushels
2 : undue or immoderate indulgence : intemperance also : an act or instance of intemperance prevent excesses and abuses by newly created local powers — Albert Shanker
in excess of
: to an amount or degree beyond : over

excess

adjective

Definition of excess (Entry 2 of 3)

: more than the usual, proper, or specified amount

excess

verb
excessed; excessing; excesses

Definition of excess (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to eliminate the position of excessed several teachers because of budget cutbacks

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Examples of excess in a Sentence

Noun

They were equipped with an excess of provisions. The tests found an excess of sodium in his blood. He lived a life of excess. The movie embraces all the worst excesses of popular American culture. the violent excesses of the military regime He apologized for his past excesses.

Adjective

Basketball provided an outlet for their excess energy. She is trying to eliminate excess fat and calories from her diet.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Not unlike at his homes in Argentina and Miami, on vivid display in his coffee table memoir, visual excess is essential to the Faena secret sauce. Erik Maza, Town & Country, "Alan Faena Built the Ultimate Shopping Bazaar for Design Snobs," 26 Mar. 2019 The results of his testing showed that, while mounted, a bull rider experiences accelerations of in excess of 3 g's. William Gurstelle, Popular Mechanics, "'Game of Thrones' Science: Could a Person Ride a Dragon?," 15 Apr. 2019 The lighting is greatly in excess of what is necessary. WSJ, "Trooper Deaths and LED Lights That are Too Bright," 12 Apr. 2019 What to do with the excess seems clear: sell it to whomever wants to buy it. Joe Pappalardo, Popular Mechanics, "America's New Energy Coast," 19 Mar. 2019 Let sit 15 to 30 minutes, then brush or vacuum off the excess. Carolyn Forte, Good Housekeeping, "Here's Exactly How to Clean Your Yoga Mat," 6 Mar. 2019 Still, the qualities that made Mad Men so good are present here, if buried a bit beneath all the excess. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "The Romanoffs, from Mad Men creator Matt Weiner, feels like a period piece about the present," 12 Oct. 2018 Then, menswear tuxedos, boyish silhouettes, glam rock boots and silk multicolored jabot collars evoked the excesses of Studio 54 in its 1970s heyday when Yves Saint Laurent was a guest. Thomas Adamson, The Seattle Times, "Starry Saint Laurent show in Paris sees models walk on water," 25 Sep. 2018 The former Real Madrid superstar formalised his four-year deal with the Italian giants earlier this week after a fee in the excess of €100m was agreed between the two clubs, leaving many to question how such a move came about. SI.com, "Juventus Chief Reveals How Joao Cancelo Signing Triggered Cristiano Ronaldo's Stunning Move," 12 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

If given the power to set the overall budget and impound excess spending, subject to an override by two-thirds of each house, the president would once again be a real player in the budget game. John Steele Gordon, WSJ, "Why We Have So Many Shutdowns," 16 Jan. 2019 The most controversial source of excess spending, though, is rent-seeking by health-care firms. The Economist, "Which firms profit most from America’s health-care system," 15 Mar. 2018 Experts aren’t sure of exactly how these excess androgens can affect ovulation. Mary Claire Lagroue, SELF, "Can Diet and Exercise Actually Improve PCOS Symptoms?," 23 Apr. 2019 There was 21 million square feet of excess demand over the four quarters ended March 31, compared with 18 million in 2018. Jennifer Smith, WSJ, "Warehouse Availability Stabilizes in Tight U.S. Logistics Market," 18 Apr. 2019 Before getting started it’s important to ensure the basement is dry and free of any excess moisture, which can promote the growth of dangerous mold. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, "How to Finish Your Basement," 18 Apr. 2019 After dabbing a bit onto the lid with your ring finger, gently place a piece of Scotch tape overtop and then carefully lift it away to remove excess pigment. Jenna Rennert, Vogue, "How to Pull Off Festival Girl Makeup Beyond Coachella," 16 Apr. 2019 The difference between beloved possessions and excess stuff had never seemed starker. Lonnie Firestone, Glamour, "It Took a Fire in My Building to Understand Marie Kondo's Method," 15 Jan. 2019 That adds to excess Chinese industrial production of steel and other commodities which get exported at low prices U.S. firms can’t match. Bob Davis, WSJ, "Trade Talks Spotlight Role of China’s State-Owned Firms," 26 Jan. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The new study found that ovarian and rectal cancers were not linked either to excess weight or rapid weight gain among the women tracked — something of a surprise. Melissa Healy, latimes.com, "Obesity may make women more vulnerable to a host of cancers, especially if they gain weight quickly," 23 May 2018 Party buses operate in a gray area where adults are allowed to drink, and often do to excess. Lavendrick Smith And Steve Harrison, charlotteobserver, "After a party bus tragedy, California passed new rules. Will that happen in NC? | Charlotte Observer," 4 May 2018 States with below average shares of adults who drink to excess typically have lower incomes. Cheyenne Buckingham, USA TODAY, "These are America’s drunkest states," 8 Mar. 2018 Some 20% of adults drink to excess in Michigan, more than the comparable national share of 18%. Cheyenne Buckingham, USA TODAY, "These are America’s drunkest states," 8 Mar. 2018 However, when the horrors are directly presented in the second half, the play falls into a mix of bloated melodrama with Grand Guignol excesses that grow tiresome after a long three hours. Theodore P. Mahne, NOLA.com, "Early Williams' 'Not About Nightingales' a brutal work, difficult to sustain," 8 Dec. 2017 WeWork’s deal to buy a century-old department store building may add another icon to excess to the neighborhood. Justin Lahart, WSJ, "WeWork’s Lord & Taylor Deal: Savvy Move or Top of the Market?," 24 Oct. 2017 In the months before the event men live in isolation and drink to excess a mixture of cow milk and cow blood for months in order to become vastly bloated and overweight. Tim Spector, CNN, "I spent three days as a hunter-gatherer to see if it would improve my gut health," 5 July 2017 The drunkest city in America - at least according to one recent ranking - is Green Bay, Wisconsin, where a whopping 27 percent of adults reports drinking to excess in the last 30 days. Leada Gore, AL.com, "2 of the most stone-cold sober cities in America are in Alabama," 25 May 2017

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

Noun

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

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1971, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for excess

Noun

Middle English, from Anglo-French or Late Latin; Anglo-French exces, from Late Latin excessus, from Latin, departure, projection, from excedere to exceed

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Statistics for excess

Last Updated

12 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for excess

The first known use of excess was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for excess

excess

noun

English Language Learners Definition of excess

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an amount that is more than the usual or necessary amount
: behavior that is considered wrong because it goes beyond what is usual, normal, or proper
: actions or ways of behaving that go beyond what is usual or proper

excess

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of excess (Entry 2 of 2)

: more than is usual, allowed, or needed

excess

noun
ex·​cess | \ ik-ˈses How to pronounce excess (audio) , ˈek-ˌses\

Kids Definition of excess

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a state of being more than enough Don't eat to excess.
2 : the amount by which something is or has too much

excess

adjective

Kids Definition of excess (Entry 2 of 2)

: more than is usual or acceptable

excess

adjective
ex·​cess

Legal Definition of excess

: more than a usual or specified amount specifically : additional to an amount specified under another insurance policy excess coverage excess insurance

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More from Merriam-Webster on excess

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with excess

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for excess

Spanish Central: Translation of excess

Nglish: Translation of excess for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of excess for Arabic Speakers

Comments on excess

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