\ 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

Residents of one Willow Glen neighborhood are celebrating their inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places by opening their homes so the public can see what the fuss is about. Anne Gelhaus, The Mercury News, "Willow Glen Eichler owners celebrate their place in national history," 11 Aug. 2019 He was saved when a curious motorist asked what the fuss was about. Will Larkin, chicagotribune.com, "Ranking the 100 best Bears players ever: No. 28, George Trafton," 8 Aug. 2019 And given the garden’s recent re-opening following a three-year, $6.5 million renovation, many others, just like Jones, will be lured to Lotusland to see what all the fuss is about. Leigh Penney, Vogue, "A Hollywood Crowd Came Out for a Japanese Garden Party in Support of Lotusland," 29 July 2019 Barry Sanders never got what the fuss was all about. Mitch Albom, Detroit Free Press, "Mitch Albom: Barry Sanders retirement a bombshell we should have saw coming," 21 July 2019 Kenyan Drake and Kalen Ballage will likely resemble how the Patriots’ utilize their running backs — despite the fuss surrounding Ballage’s work with the first-team offense ahead of Drake during the first week of training camp. Safid Deen, sun-sentinel.com, "Let’s not overthink Kenyan Drake, Kalen Ballage and this Dolphins running back situation," 27 July 2019 The only exceptions Saturday came from a rhino and two otters in nearby enclosures who nonchalantly went about their affairs and ignored the fuss. Steve Rubenstein, SFChronicle.com, "Baby penguins make their waddling debut at SF Zoo," 27 July 2019 Nam prik is traditionally made with a mortar and pestle, but this recipe’s chile paste is first created in a food processor then finished on the stovetop for maximum flavor and minimum fuss. Aliza Abarbanel, Bon Appétit, "Go Ahead and Fill Up on This Fiery Cashew Dip," 26 July 2019 Fewer layers, less fabric, and less fuss in general. Bianca Nieves, Teen Vogue, "Kendall Jenner's Favorite White Tank is Only $10," 3 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

To add some comic punch, Gyllenhaal does a lot of business — fussing with the stage lights and even venturing out into the auditorium. Kyle Smith, National Review, "On Broadway, a Stagy Kind of Mourning," 9 Aug. 2019 At the funeral, as the crowd fussed over Jyoti’s fate, Subbu faced Giri’s corpse and made a proclamation. Abhijith Ravinutala, chicagotribune.com, "2019 Algren Awards: Finalist: Definition(s)," 20 July 2019 Too many side issues — the White House visit, Dustin Pedroia’s status, Steven Wright being suspended, fussing for weeks over whether to keep Blake Swihart, etc. Peter Abraham, BostonGlobe.com, "David Price and Dennis Eckersley should meet — and get this over with," 18 July 2019 For the state, why not just hike the income tax overall for the top rung of companies, without fussing over pay ratios and offshoring and contracting out work? Owen Thomas, SFChronicle.com, "San Francisco, why are you so taxing?," 19 June 2019 Instead of fussing over Claire's flight to Scotland and trip to Inverness, Claire steps out of her cab in Boston and the scene deftly transitions to a cobblestoned Edinburgh road. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Outlander Season 3 Episode 5 Reunites Claire and Jamie—For a Few Moments," 9 Oct. 2017 Neither of them were that fussed about making a big deal about it. Jen Juneau, PEOPLE.com, "Ed Sheeran Confirms He and Cherry Seaborn Are Married," 12 July 2019 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

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

15 Aug 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

What made you want to look up fuss? 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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