four-letter word

noun

Definition of four-letter word

: any of a group of vulgar or obscene words typically made up of four letters broadly : a taboo word or topic tax is a four-letter word to him

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Examples of four-letter word in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In many respects, those findings mirrored Democrats’ own assessments of Mr. Comey — save for the omission of certain four-letter words. Alexander Burns, New York Times, "Democrats Find Vindication, and New Agony, in Report on Comey," 14 June 2018 And if a firework goes off in your hand, feel free to fire off all the four-letter words you like if the law banning public swearing is repealed. Fenit Nirappil, Washington Post, "Legalizing extramarital sex and public swearing? Highlights of interesting bills in Virginia," 9 Jan. 2018 In many respects, those findings mirrored Democrats’ own assessments of Mr. Comey — save for the omission of certain four-letter words. Alexander Burns, New York Times, "Democrats Find Vindication, and New Agony, in Report on Comey," 14 June 2018 Love: the most dangerous four-letter word in the dictionary. Alexis Jones And Deanna Janes, Harper's BAZAAR, "21 Rom-Coms to Stream on Netflix this Valentine's Day," 13 Feb. 2019 Huffman told a joke that included a veiled reference to a four-letter word degrading to women, while telling a story about a woman who was considering running for office. Laura Hancock, cleveland.com, "Talk It Out: Should Rep. Seitz, Sen. Huffman resign after vulgar jokes about women?," 1 Feb. 2018 In many respects, those findings mirrored Democrats’ own assessments of Mr. Comey — save for the omission of certain four-letter words. James Hohmann, Washington Post, "The Daily 202: Trump is losing the debate over splitting up immigrant families," 15 June 2018 But last week she was forced to backpedal after using a vulgar four-letter word to refer to Ivanka Trump; the incident has been at the center of countless debates and think pieces. Andrew R. Chow, New York Times, "What’s on TV Wednesday: ‘The Fosters’ and ‘Full Frontal With Samantha Bee’," 6 June 2018 But now that anchormen can't report on the President without dropping a variant of another four-letter word, Rockwell’s misdeed passed largely unnoticed. Jack Dickey, SI.com, "When a Wardrobe Malfunction Was the Ultimate Malfeasance for the NFL and CBS," 2 Feb. 2018

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

1897, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

19 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for four-letter word

The first known use of four-letter word was in 1897

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More Definitions for four-letter word

four-letter word

noun

English Language Learners Definition of four-letter word

: an offensive word and especially an offensive word that has four letters
: a word, subject, or idea that is disliked by some people

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