1

fright

noun \ ˈfrīt \

Definition of fright

1 :fear excited by sudden danger :alarm
  • gave me quite a fright
2 :something strange, ugly, or shocking

Examples of fright in a Sentence

  1. Her eyes were wide with fright.

  2. people in our neighborhood think that that orange and green office building is a hideous fright

Recent Examples of fright from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'fright.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of fright

Middle English, from Old English fyrhto, fryhto; akin to Old High German forhta fear

fright Synonyms

Synonyms
eyesore, hideosity, horror, mess, monstrosity, sight
Related Words
eye-catcher; blot, smear, smudge, spot, stain
Near Antonyms
vision

Synonym Discussion of fright

fear, dread, fright, alarm, panic, terror, trepidation mean painful agitation in the presence or anticipation of danger. fear is the most general term and implies anxiety and usually loss of courage.
    • fear of the unknown
dread usually adds the idea of intense reluctance to face or meet a person or situation and suggests aversion as well as anxiety.
    • faced the meeting with dread
fright implies the shock of sudden, startling fear.
    • fright at being awakened suddenly
alarm suggests a sudden and intense awareness of immediate danger.
    • view the situation with alarm
panic implies unreasoning and overmastering fear causing hysterical activity.
    • the news caused widespread panic
terror implies the most extreme degree of fear.
    • immobilized with terror
trepidation adds to dread the implications of timidity, trembling, and hesitation.
    • raised the subject with trepidation

2

fright

verb

Definition of fright

transitive verb
:to alarm suddenly :frighten

Examples of fright in a Sentence

  1. a ghastly sight that would fright even the most stouthearted soul

First Known Use of fright

before 12th century



FRIGHT Defined for English Language Learners

fright

noun

Definition of fright for English Language Learners

  • : fear caused by sudden danger : sudden fear

  • : a feeling of sudden fear

  • : something that looks strange, shocking, ugly, etc.


FRIGHT Defined for Kids

fright

noun \ ˈfrīt \

Definition of fright for Students

1 :sudden terror :great fear
2 :something that frightens or is ugly or shocking
  • You look a fright! What happened?


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up fright? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

serious difficulty or misfortune

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one-green-toy-robot-amidst-many-red-toy-robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!