\ ˈfrau̇n How to pronounce frown (audio) \
frowned; frowning; frowns

Definition of frown

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to contract the brow in displeasure or concentration frowned in anger
2 : to give evidence of displeasure or disapproval by or as if by facial expression critics frown on the idea

transitive verb

: to show displeasure with or disapproval of especially by facial expression I will be neither frowned nor ridiculed into error— Noah Webster



Definition of frown (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an expression of displeasure
2 : a wrinkling of the brow in displeasure or concentration

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Other Words from frown


frowner noun
frowningly \ ˈfrau̇-​niŋ-​lē How to pronounce frowningly (audio) \ adverb


frowny \ ˈfrau̇-​nē How to pronounce frowny (audio) \ adjective, informal
a frowny face

Synonyms & Antonyms for frown

Synonyms: Verb

glare, gloom, glower, lower (also lour), scowl

Synonyms: Noun

face, grimace, lower (also lour), moue, mouth, mow, mug, pout, scowl, snoot

Antonyms: Verb

beam, grin, smile

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Examples of frown in a Sentence


She was frowning when she entered the room, so I knew that she was annoyed about something. the boss just stood there and frowned at his assistant who, once again, was in trouble


it was clear from the frown on the CEO's face that sales were headed in the wrong direction
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Even if that means posting a video to her Instagram story of her frowning, jet-lagged on a plane and totally over it. Sydney Bucksbaum,, "Game of Thrones star Sophie Turner kills viral Bottle Cap Challenge with hilarious video," 12 July 2019 Many of Jerusalem's residents are observant Jews, Muslims or Christians, communities that often frown on homosexuality. Caron Creighton, Fox News, "Thousands march in Jerusalem Gay Pride amid surrogacy uproar," 2 Aug. 2018 His outlook was a tribute to a time when fans were loyal and faithful and never wavered in their support; a time when booing and disparaging your own team was frowned upon. Mike Bianchi,, "All fans should be a little more like Mr. Two Bits | Commentary," 13 July 2019 The mayor leaned forward in his seat as speakers told their stories, frowning or nodding as some gave passionate testimony about why the shooting of Clark has devastated the city’s black community. Ryan Lillis, Nashelly Chavez And Ed Fletcher, sacbee, "'It just doesn't look right,' says Sacramento councilman who represents Stephon Clark neighborhood | The Sacramento Bee," 3 Apr. 2018 Another picture has frowning stick figures behind what appears to be a chain-link fence. Washington Post, "Migrant child drawings depict jail-like scenes of detention," 5 July 2019 Shelton encountered resistance from male colleagues who frowned upon women doing cellar work. Ellen Bhang,, "Women winemakers tell their stories at Portland Wine Week," 1 July 2019 Fuddy-duddies frowned while audiences and box offices swooned. Armond White, National Review, "Franco Zeffirelli: Unlikely Conservative Hero," 20 June 2019 Last year’s contest winner was a perpetually-frowning English bulldog named Zsa Zsa, who actually died less than a month after winning the competition. Rachel E. Greenspan, Time, "Here's Why the Chinese Crested Dog Is So Victorious at the World's Ugliest Dog Contest," 20 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

An independent privacy oversight board will be spun up frown thoughtfully at Facebook’s future initiatives surrounding the creative acquisition of user data. Casey Newton, The Verge, "It’s time to regulate tech platforms with laws, not fines," 30 July 2019 Court rules frown on such broad sealing practices because truly confidential information rarely spans an entire legal brief. NBC News, "How judges added to the grim toll of opioids," 25 June 2019 Sporting an exaggerated frown, Miley pretended to be upset with Liam. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth Wore Coordinating Outfits to the “Avengers: Endgame” Premiere," 23 Apr. 2019 This is Eisenberg, after all, the doyen of the flinch and the frown. Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, "“The Farewell” Mixes Mourning and Revelry," 12 July 2019 This melting dome will turn that frown upside-down. Simona Matovic,, "How to upgrade your grilling toolkit | Check out Amazon’s top-rated grill tools," 18 July 2019 Next, tilt your head downward, so your eyebrows look nice and V-like, like the 😠 emoji but without the frown. Sarah Todd, Quartz at Work, "How to hold your head if you want to look intimidating," 15 July 2019 At first, that seemed to be her fate in the show, too, as actress Amanda Brugel was restricted to a few short words with June (Elisabeth Moss) and some disapproving frowns. Sabrina Rojas Weiss,, "What You Need To Remember About The Marthas For Handmaid's Tale Season 3," 5 June 2019 Photos show a sullen-looking Trump standing next to the queen, hands at his side, a frown on his face. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "Analysis: What’s with Trump’s suits? Asking a tailor," 4 June 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1581, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for frown

Verb and Noun

Middle English frounen, from Middle French frogner to snort, frown, of Celt origin; akin to Welsh ffroen nostril, Old Irish srón nose

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Learn More about frown

Dictionary Entries near frown


Froward, Cape



frown on/upon



Statistics for frown

Last Updated

7 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for frown

The first known use of frown was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for frown



English Language Learners Definition of frown

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to make a frown in anger, concentration, etc.



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

: a serious facial expression that usually shows anger, displeasure, or concentration


\ ˈfrau̇n How to pronounce frown (audio) \
frowned; frowning

Kids Definition of frown

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to have a serious facial expression (as in anger or thought)
2 : to look with disapproval … Jo frowned upon the whole project and would have nothing to do with it …— Louisa May Alcott, Little Women



Kids Definition of frown (Entry 2 of 2)

: a serious facial expression that shows anger, unhappiness, or deep thought

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More from Merriam-Webster on frown

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with frown

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for frown

Spanish Central: Translation of frown

Nglish: Translation of frown for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of frown for Arabic Speakers

Comments on frown

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


a usually brief trip or an expedition

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