fa·​mous | \ ˈfā-məs How to pronounce famous (audio) \

Definition of famous

1a : widely known a restaurant famous for its French cuisine
b : honored for achievement a famous explorer
2 : excellent, first-rate famous weather for a walk

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Other Words from famous

famousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for famous

famous, renowned, celebrated, noted, notorious, distinguished, eminent, illustrious mean known far and wide. famous implies little more than the fact of being, sometimes briefly, widely and popularly known. a famous actress renowned implies more glory and acclamation. one of the most renowned figures in sports history celebrated implies notice and attention especially in print. the most celebrated beauty of her day noted suggests well-deserved public attention. the noted mystery writer notorious frequently adds to famous an implication of questionableness or evil. a notorious gangster distinguished implies acknowledged excellence or superiority. a distinguished scientist who won the Nobel Prize eminent implies even greater prominence for outstanding quality or character. the country's most eminent writers illustrious stresses enduring honor and glory attached to a deed or person. illustrious war heroes

Examples of famous in a Sentence

a book about some of the most famous people of the last century some truly famous Southern-style cooking

Recent Examples on the Web

Along with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, Collins was part of the most famous space exploration mission in history, but the now-88-year-old simply sees it as doing the job asked of them. Fox News, "Apollo 11's Michael Collins reflects on historic Moon landing: 'We were just regular astronauts'," 3 July 2019 Bradgate House’s most famous resident may not have lived there for very long, but the site of the once-great estate continues to wield fascination for those interested in the story of the tragic nine-day queen. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "Is This the Childhood Home of Lady Jane Grey, England’s Nine-Day Queen?," 3 July 2019 More Stories Swift’s gripe is that Borchetta has sold his company—and its rights to masters of Swift’s catalogue—to a man that Swift appears to consider a nemesis: Scooter Braun, one of most famous music executives in the world. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Taylor Swift’s Oddly Personal Contract Dispute," 2 July 2019 The 106-mile Ultra-Trail du Mont Blanc (UTMB) is one of the most famous and popular trail races in the world. The Economist, "For women, running is still an act of defiance," 28 June 2019 By the end of the 1920s, Lenglen was more famous and more popular than any other athlete, yes; but also any movie star, singer or political figure in Europe. Jon Wertheim And Jacob Feldman, SI.com, "The Incomparable Life and Mysterious Death of Suzanne Lenglen," 27 June 2019 So in that sense: justice. • Christine Sinclair is the the most famous and decorated female athlete in Canada, likely playing her final World Cup at 36. Bruce Jenkins, SFChronicle.com, "World Cup’s VAR replay system tarnishes a great event," 25 June 2019 Could acne really be affecting one of the world's most famous people in such a meaningful way? Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Kendall Jenner Says Stopping Birth Control Gave Her Acne," 24 June 2019 Some attorneys say NDAs are the only protection the rich and famous have against unfounded accusations. David Von Drehle, Twin Cities, "David Von Drehle: Jeffrey Epstein’s scandal of secrecy points to a creeping rot in the American justice system," 19 June 2019

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

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

History and Etymology for famous

Middle English, from Anglo-French, from Latin famosus, from fama fame

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Last Updated

5 Jul 2019

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

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More Definitions for famous



English Language Learners Definition of famous

: known or recognized by very many people : having fame


fa·​mous | \ ˈfā-məs How to pronounce famous (audio) \

Kids Definition of famous

: very well-known

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More from Merriam-Webster on famous

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with famous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for famous

Spanish Central: Translation of famous

Nglish: Translation of famous for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of famous for Arabic Speakers

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