\ ˈfām How to pronounce fame (audio) \

Definition of fame

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : public estimation : reputation
b : popular acclaim : renown
2 archaic : rumor


famed; faming

Definition of fame (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 archaic : report, repute
2 : to make famous

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Synonyms & Antonyms for fame

Synonyms: Noun

celebrity, notoriety, renown

Antonyms: Noun

anonymity, oblivion, obscureness, obscurity

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Examples of fame in a Sentence


He died at the height of his fame. The book tells the story of her sudden rise to fame. He gained fame as an actor. She went to Hollywood seeking fame and fortune.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Cassadaga owes its existence to George Colby, a medium and lecturer who gained some degree of fame traveling the East and the Midwest doing psychic readings. Los Angeles Times, "At this Florida camp, believers can ask for healing or a chat with the dead," 2 Sep. 2019 More broadly, the movement is trying to show that being an internet creator is not merely a vain pursuit of fame, but an actual job that requires a lot of work—which should come with workers’ rights. Michelle Cheng, Quartz at Work, "Union pushes at places like YouTube and WeWork could transform white-collar work," 1 Sep. 2019 On her last few albums, her love songs are about finding refuge from the ravages of fame, and her breakup songs are about being torn apart by the same ravages. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Why Taylor Swift Wants to Be ‘The Man’," 29 Aug. 2019 The story begins at the height of his Hollywood fame and moves backwards in time, showing important moments in Frank's life. Mia Galuppo, The Hollywood Reporter, "Richard Linklater Musical to Be Filmed Over 20-Year Span," 29 Aug. 2019 And in his brief time with the 49ers, Garoppolo has seen both sides of fame. Harold Gutmann, The Mercury News, "49ers’ Garoppolo has led through humility, all the way back to high school," 27 Aug. 2019 Fabien Cousteau grew up understanding the power—and drawbacks—of fame. Georgia Frances King, Quartz, "Proof of a successful life isn’t fame—it’s getting something done," 22 Aug. 2019 His nickname grew shorter as his fame grew larger. 1. Patrick Saunders, The Denver Post, "Saunders: Where have all of baseball’s great nicknames gone?," 10 Aug. 2019 Columnist Frank Shyong caught up with the good foot doctor to talk about the end of a strange kind of fame. latimes.com, "Today: On Edge Over ICE Raids," 15 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Trying to weave a fairy tale life from a horror story reality, Vieux-Chauvet’s heroine, Minette, rides her beauty and talent out of poverty in late-18th-century Port-au-Prince to fame onstage as a singer. Alison Mcculloch, New York Times, "Fiction in Translation," 17 Feb. 2017

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


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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for fame


Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin fama report, fame; akin to Latin fari to speak — more at ban entry 1

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Statistics for fame

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fame

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

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More Definitions for fame



English Language Learners Definition of fame

: the condition of being known or recognized by many people


\ ˈfām How to pronounce fame (audio) \

Kids Definition of fame

: the fact or condition of being known or recognized by many people

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More from Merriam-Webster on fame

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fame

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fame

Spanish Central: Translation of fame

Nglish: Translation of fame for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fame for Arabic Speakers

Comments on fame

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


to make a temporary encampment

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