\ ˈfrēk How to pronounce freak (audio) \

Definition of freak

 (Entry 1 of 4)

1a : a sudden and odd or seemingly pointless idea or turn of the mind you should be able to stop and go on, and follow this way or that, as the freak takes you— R. L. Stevenson
b : a seemingly capricious action or event Through an incredible freak of fate they survived the shipwreck.
2 archaic : a whimsical quality or disposition
3 : one that is markedly unusual or abnormal: such as
a : a person or animal having a physical oddity and appearing in a circus sideshow
b slang
(1) : a sexual deviate
(2) : a person who uses an illicit drug a speed freak
c : hippie
d : an atypical postage stamp usually caused by a unique defect in paper (such as a crease) or a unique event in the manufacturing process (such as a speck of dirt on the plate) that does not produce a constant or systematic effect
4a : an ardent enthusiast film freaks
b : a person who is obsessed with something a control freak



Definition of freak (Entry 2 of 4)

: not natural, normal, or likely He was the victim of a freak accident. a freak occurrence


verb (1)
freaked; freaking; freaks

Definition of freak (Entry 3 of 4)

transitive verb

1 : to make greatly distressed, astonished, or discomposed often used with out the news freaked them out
2 : to put under the influence of a psychedelic drug often used with out

intransitive verb

1 : to withdraw from reality especially by taking drugs often used with out
2 : to experience nightmarish hallucinations as a result of taking drugs often used with out
3a : to behave irrationally or unconventionally under the influence of drugs often used with out
b : to react with extreme or irrational distress or discomposure often used with out


verb (2)
freaked; freaking; freaks

Definition of freak (Entry 4 of 4)

transitive verb

: to streak especially with color silver and mother-of-pearl freaking the intense azure— Robert Bridges †1930

Examples of freak in a Sentence

Noun eccentric, artistic types whom many regarded as freaks I had a terrible rash on my face, and I felt like a freak. Adjective He was the victim of a freak accident. even weather forecasters seemed surprised by the freak hailstorm
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The last thing the Browns needed on the final play of practice on Friday was for Newsome to suffer a freak accident and be ruled out of the game with a concussion. cleveland, 12 Dec. 2021 One is an androgynous freak; … oh wait, so is the other one. Washington Post, 18 Nov. 2021 His flashbacks and freak outs have escalated this week. Harriet Sokmensuer,, 17 Nov. 2021 Two, the Volturi — basically, vampire police led by Michael Sheen — want this little freak dead. Rebecca Alter, Vulture, 25 Oct. 2021 Yet, the persistence of these higher prices, long after the cold spell, indicates that more than just a freak storm is at play. University Of Houston Energy Fellows, Forbes, 8 Sep. 2021 The Post story profiled a 60-year-old Iowa woman named Kim Schmadeke, whose trailer was torn apart by a freak storm that demolished large swaths of Iowa in August 2020. Washington Post, 23 June 2021 Climate change coupled with a freak August lightning storm lit the Castle Fire. Star Tribune, 4 June 2021 The 24-year-old Benavidez isn’t as refined a fighter as Álvarez but is a physical freak. Dylan Hernández Columnist, Los Angeles Times, 7 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective As night fell, the hip-swaying alt-R&B of Sudan Archives gave way to the baroque pop of Andy Schauf and the freak-folk lullabies of Davendra Banhardt, who contemplated the possibility of aliens making an appearance. Nate Jackson, Los Angeles Times, 16 Nov. 2021 The punch wasn’t a killer, but the freak way in which the punch’s recipient landed resulted in him dying, and the rather innocent and good Emmett being sent to Salina. John Tamny, Forbes, 13 Oct. 2021 First a winter cold snap caused rolling blackouts at Texas chip fabs operated Infineon, NXP and Samsung, before a freak fire in March at key Japanese supplier Renesas compounded the problem. Christiaan Hetzner, Fortune, 17 Sep. 2021 Two years ago, her home was severely damaged in a freak flood. Elena Kadvany, San Francisco Chronicle, 16 Sep. 2021 But, in 1988, Salem died in a freak ultralight accident outside San Antonio. Steve Coll, The New Yorker, 11 Sep. 2021 As heat, wildfires, and freak weather patterns transform familiar surroundings, can hikers and runners still rely on their instincts? Eleanor Cummins, The New Republic, 27 Aug. 2021 Climate change is exacerbating extreme and freak weather events so rapidly that even the insurance industry is struggling to keep up., 16 Aug. 2021 This means that even if the AppsTango offices get swept away in a freak Utah hurricane (anything can happen in 2020), your work is protected. The Salt Lake Tribune, 8 Aug. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In previous research, the team made the robot look and act enough like the real deal to freak out the mosquitofish. Doug Johnson, Ars Technica, 17 Dec. 2021 The sweetest love scene on a New York stage right now involves neither Left Bank bohemians, Orpheus and Eurydice nor even that freak with the mask. New York Times, 8 Dec. 2021 Trying to acknowledge and be aware of it, or be unintentionally manipulative or freak out the kid. Rachel Handler, Vulture, 20 Nov. 2021 Does thinking so much about the nature of reality and consciousness — and sorry to put it crudely — ever freak you out? David Marchese, New York Times, 10 Dec. 2021 How to find lower prices and avoid empty shelves during the holiday shopping rush Not to freak you out, but Hanukkah is in less than two weeks, with Christmas in just over five. Aj Willingham, CNN, 19 Nov. 2021 This means your investments are rooted in logic instead of the news cycle that could hype you up or freak you out about certain companies. - Make Genius Money Moves, Forbes, 18 Oct. 2021 All eight episodes of Just Beyond hit Disney+ on October 13, just in time to freak yourself out before Halloween. Savannah Salazar, Vulture, 30 Sep. 2021 But Wall Street didn’t freak out over the inflation report., 14 Oct. 2021

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


1563, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


circa 1887, in the meaning defined above

Verb (1)

1964, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Verb (2)

1637, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for freak

Noun, Adjective, and Verb (1)

origin unknown

Verb (2)

perhaps from or akin to freckle entry 1

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Last Updated

17 Dec 2021

Cite this Entry

“Freak.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for freak



English Language Learners Definition of freak

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a very strange or unusual person
: a person or animal that is physically abnormal
: a person who is very interested or active in something specified



English Language Learners Definition of freak (Entry 2 of 2)

: not natural, normal, or likely


\ ˈfrēk How to pronounce freak (audio) \

Kids Definition of freak

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: a strange, abnormal, or unusual person, thing, or event

Other Words from freak

freakish adjective
freaky adjective



Kids Definition of freak (Entry 2 of 3)

: not likely a freak accident


freaked; freaking

Kids Definition of freak (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : to make (someone) upset usually used with out …the doctors told my parents that someday I'd need hearing aids. I don't know why this always freaked me out a bit…— R. J. Palacio, Wonder
2 : to become upset often used with out He just freaked out.

More from Merriam-Webster on freak

Nglish: Translation of freak for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of freak for Arabic Speakers


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