fear·​some | \ ˈfir-səm How to pronounce fearsome (audio) \

Definition of fearsome

1a : causing fear a fearsome monster
b : intense, extreme fearsome determination

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Other Words from fearsome

fearsomely adverb
fearsomeness noun

Examples of fearsome in a Sentence

at night the child would always imagine that there were fearsome monsters lurking under his bed after working all afternoon in the hot sun, I had developed a fearsome thirst
Recent Examples on the Web The San Diego Zoo’s two newest exhibits offer a glimpse of some of the world’s smallest birds and its largest, most fearsome lizards. San Diego Union-Tribune, 1 June 2021 The vessel’s capabilities have been continuously evolved as new technology became available, and as a result the Navy today operates nearly 70 of the most fearsome surface combatants ever built. Loren Thompson, Forbes, 20 May 2021 The young Pennsylvanian who celebrated Hitler and gleefully indulged in his beliefs that some races are biologically inferior to others was still being trained with some of the most fearsome weaponry in the world. Talia Lavin, The New Republic, 17 May 2021 Ten years ago this month, a popular Rangers enforcer, considered by some to be the toughest man and the most fearsome fighter in the N.H.L., died alone in his apartment from an accidental overdose of painkillers and alcohol. New York Times, 7 May 2021 Now, Long is serving double duty as the show’s executive producer and one of its most fearsome contestants. Kyndall Cunningham, Vulture, 15 Apr. 2021 The fearsome threesome is inadvertently resurrected 300 years later by a boy whose family has moved from Los Angeles to Salem. Rebecca Rubin, chicagotribune.com, 20 May 2021 At night, the blazing fireplace and amber lighting set a cozy mood for after-dinner drinks, where a quick backward glance reassures that Goddard’s fearsome lions haven’t escaped their canvas confines. Alexandra Kirkman, Fortune, 16 May 2021 In 1930s Australia, a young aboriginal man named Gutjuk (Jacob Junior Nayinggul) who wants to save the last of his family is forced to track down his uncle, a fearsome warrior causing trouble in the outback. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, 13 May 2021

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

1768, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for fearsome

fear entry 1 + -some entry 1

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Time Traveler for fearsome

Time Traveler

The first known use of fearsome was in 1768

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Statistics for fearsome

Last Updated

4 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Fearsome.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fearsome. Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for fearsome



English Language Learners Definition of fearsome

: causing fear : very frightening


fear·​some | \ ˈfir-səm How to pronounce fearsome (audio) \

Kids Definition of fearsome

: very frightening a fearsome growl

More from Merriam-Webster on fearsome

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fearsome

Nglish: Translation of fearsome for Spanish Speakers


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