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

Until about 10,000 years ago, the saber-tooth cat Smilodon fatalis was a fearsome predator in what is now the American West. John Pickrell, National Geographic, "Saber-tooth surprise: Fossils redraw picture of the fearsome big cat," 5 Aug. 2019 Humans, a more fearsome predator, altered the landscape. Darryl Fears, The Denver Post, "Killing wolves was supposed to solve a problem but created issue with coyotes," 3 June 2019 On the pitching side, a slew of trades may lead to the downfall of the team’s bullpen, but as long as the unit remains intact, the quartet of Will Smith, Sam Dyson, Tony Watson and Reyes Moronta are as fearsome of a foursome as any in baseball. Kerry Crowley, The Mercury News, "What will it take for the Giants to keep this hot streak going?," 17 July 2019 Mennonite women come to full and fearsome life in Molotschna; brilliant and angry and quick-witted, impossible to ignore or diminish. Sarah Jones, The New Republic, "Miriam Toews’s Quiet Revolution," 26 June 2019 Credited with taking one of the most fearsome photos ever of Pipeline, English has transformed his award-winning photo and numerous others into collectible elements of art, apparel and accessories, including posters and prints. San Diego Union-Tribune, "New businesses include hotels in Encinitas, Escondido," 11 July 2019 Backed by thousands of fans clad in blue shirts, and the colors of the Indian flag painted across their faces, this was supposed to be a formality for one of the most fearsome batting line-ups in world cricket. James Masters, CNN, "India crashes out to New Zealand in Cricket World Cup semifinal," 10 July 2019 His most fearsome challenge in professional baseball came while pitching for Durham. Ryan Kolakowski, The Courier-Journal, "Former Louisville baseball star Brendan McKay was dominant in his Tampa Bay Rays debut," 29 June 2019 Short of the Aces, the Sparks were considered surefire contenders for the championship and, after the acquisition of Chiney Ogwumike from the Connecticut Sun, L.A. was expected to have one of the most fearsome frontcourts in the league. Kellen Becoats, SI.com, "No More Balance in L.A.: Sparks Continue to Struggle Despite Candace Parker’s Return," 24 June 2019

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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Statistics for fearsome

Last Updated

15 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for fearsome

The first known use of fearsome was in 1768

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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

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More from Merriam-Webster on fearsome

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fearsome

Spanish Central: Translation of fearsome

Nglish: Translation of fearsome for Spanish Speakers

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