\ ˈfəs How to pronounce fuss (audio) \

Definition of fuss

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : needless bustle or excitement They got down to business without any fuss.
b : a show of flattering attention made a big fuss over his favorite niece
2a : a state of agitation especially over a trivial matter in a fuss and stew all afternoon— Molly L. Bar-David
b : objection, protest She accepted the new assignment without any fuss.
c : an often petty controversy or quarrel the fuss they are raising … over certain words and phrases— B. J. Hendricks


fussed; fussing; fusses

Definition of fuss (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to create or be in a state of restless activity especially : to shower flattering attentions fussing over the grandchildren
b : to pay close or undue attention to small details fussed with her hair
2a : to become upset : worry
b : to express annoyance or pique : complain

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Other Words from fuss


fusser noun

Examples of fuss in a Sentence


They got down to business without any fuss. What is all the fuss about? Her new novel has caused quite a fuss. I don't want to make a fuss, but this soup is cold.


She'll fuss the whole time we're gone. I told him not to fuss. The baby fussed all day. Stop fussing and get to work! He's fussing about his new assignment.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Get our daily newsletter Those versed in the law and lore of Catholicism might be tempted to ask what all the fuss is about. Erasmus, The Economist, "Why Pope Francis may open the door to married priests," 18 June 2019 Dorothy Morgan didn’t see what all the fuss was about when staff at The Birches Assisted Living in Clarendon Hills threw a party for her 100th birthday June 6, and her family had a party of its own for the humble former longtime Hinsdale resident. Chuck Fieldman, chicagotribune.com, "Longtime former Hinsdale resident celebrates 100th birthday at The Birches Assisted Living," 14 June 2019 Seeds of hope have been planted by Casey, who tackled a tough situation with the same bullish, no-fuss, no-frills, can-do mentality that propelled him to 19 appearances with the U.S. men’s national team during a distinguished playing career. Mark Kiszla, The Denver Post, "Kiszla: How the Rapids ended a soccer nightmare by finding treasure in their own backyard," 5 June 2019 But both sides quietly agreeing not to make a fuss when it was discovered later to be riddled with bugs, as happened with a 767 for then-Chinese President Jiang Zemin? Holman W. Jenkins, WSJ, "What to Do About Huawei?," 11 Dec. 2018 For all the fuss, some say the threat of deepfakes is being blown out of proportion, pointing out that deepfake video is not pervasive and has yet to cause the chaos some have predicted. Rachel Metz, CNN, "The fight to stay ahead of deepfake videos before the 2020 US election," 12 June 2019 Saturday’s look was no exception, as the star arrived at City Hall in Vienna, Austria wearing the perfect, no fuss ballgown. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "Katie Holmes Wore a Missoni Ball Gown and Looked So Chic," 10 June 2019 Still, the fuss over Brienne’s love life reminds us that, on TV, at least, certain schoolgirlish tropes die hard. Courtney Shea, Harper's BAZAAR, "Brienne of Tarth Lives—And Gwendoline Christie Has Some Thoughts About that Love Triangle," 6 May 2019 The muted tones and simplistic, modern angular style of Scandinavian design brings a no-fuss, calming vibe to any room. Madeleine Bokan, House Beautiful, "3 Design Trends That Will Totally Transform Your Living Room," 23 May 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

By necessity, legacy distillers can’t fuss with their formulas, but the new kids on the block can. Andrew Daniels, Popular Mechanics, "Make This Flavor-Packed Old Fashioned for Memorial Day Weekend," 24 May 2019 Gabrielle Chanel wasn’t one to fuss much over flowers. Vogue, "Chanel’s New High Jewelry Collection Celebrates the Camellia—Coco’s Signature Fleur," 17 Jan. 2019 There’s a dexterous, gibberish-spouting clown on hand (Andrey Kislitsin) who has a funny extended gag fussing with washing machines on the fritz. Misha Berson, The Seattle Times, "In Cirque du Soleil’s ‘Volta,’ acro-bicyclists soar and an aerialist hovers in the air by her hair," 18 Sep. 2018 Stepping out in New York City this weekend, Hadid wore black in a cool, no-fuss way. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "Gigi Hadid’s Supermodel Guide to Wearing All Black," 21 July 2018 The combination of vintage Herman Miller pieces and work by Jasper Morrison, the Bouroullec brothers, and more, is just right—playful without seeming fussed-over. Asad Syrkett, Curbed, "Year in Curbed: The best of House Calls," 26 Dec. 2018 Anne, in poor health and perpetual petulance, is fussed over and not-so-subtly controlled by Lady Sarah Churchill (Rachel Weisz), a court noblewoman who’s learned that pleasing the queen (in every way) brings its own pleasures. Moira Macdonald, The Seattle Times, "‘The Favourite’ review: an irresistibly nasty tale of lust, power and pet bunnies," 4 Dec. 2018 Eyebrows haven't been so collectively fussed over probably since maybe ever. Sable Yong, Allure, "How to Contour Your Brows With Benefit's New 4-in-1 Brow Contour Pro," 6 Aug. 2018 That’s another reason why private-equity firms aren’t that fussed about holding things longer. Luis Garcia, WSJ, "Quantum Energy Collects $5.6 Billion for Its Latest Fund," 7 Aug. 2018

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


1701, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1792, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for fuss

Noun and Verb

origin unknown

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Statistics for fuss

Last Updated

18 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for fuss

The first known use of fuss was in 1701

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More Definitions for fuss



English Language Learners Definition of fuss

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: activity or excitement that is unusual and that often is not wanted or necessary
: an expression of anger or complaint especially about something that has little importance



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

: to be or become upset or worried
US : to show that you are annoyed or unhappy


\ ˈfəs How to pronounce fuss (audio) \

Kids Definition of fuss

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : unnecessary activity or excitement often over something unimportant
2 : protest entry 2 sense 1 He took the medicine without any fuss.
3 : a great show of interest Everyone made a fuss over the baby.


fussed; fussing

Kids Definition of fuss (Entry 2 of 2)

: to get excited or upset especially over something unimportant

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More from Merriam-Webster on fuss

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with fuss

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fuss

Spanish Central: Translation of fuss

Nglish: Translation of fuss for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of fuss for Arabic Speakers

Comments on fuss

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to form ideas or theories about something

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