gasp

verb
\ ˈgasp How to pronounce gasp (audio) \
gasped; gasping; gasps

Definition of gasp

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to catch the breath convulsively and audibly (as with shock)
2 : to breathe laboriously

transitive verb

: to utter in a gasping manner

gasp

noun
plural gasps

Definition of gasp (Entry 2 of 2)

: an act of gasping : a sudden loud intake of breath with one's mouth because of surprise, shock, pain, etc. He let out an audible gasp at the sight of the snake. a gasp of surprise His eyes looked wild and strange from the fever; he trembled continuously, and each breath he took sounded like a gasp for life.— Robert C. O'Brien In the next hour Lemieux drew gasps from the crowd half a dozen more times …— E. M. Swift

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Other Words from gasp

Verb

gasp noun

Synonyms for gasp

Synonyms: Verb

blow, heave, hyperventilate, pant, puff, wheeze

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Examples of gasp in a Sentence

Verb

Mom gasped in surprise at the sight of my sister's new haircut. He gasped as he stepped into the icy water. a dying man gasping for breath She was gasping for air.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The audience gasped, but at least J.Lo seemed more flattered than annoyed. Vogue, "The Most Shocking Golden Globe Moments of All Time," 3 Jan. 2019 In June 2017, the Internet collectively gasped over rumors of Taylor Swift traveling in a distinctly unglamorous fashion in order to avoid the paparazzi outside her Tribeca apartment. Sara Delgado, Teen Vogue, "Zayn Malik Potentially Revealed the Truth About a Famous Taylor Swift Conspiracy Theory," 15 Nov. 2018 Over several hours that day, her family said, Ms. Daniels gasped for air. New York Times, "‘Totally Preventable’: How a Sick Woman Lost Electricity, and Her Life," 13 July 2018 In court papers, Alvogen also cited instances in Alabama, Arizona and Oklahoma in the past few years in which inmates given midazolam were left gasping or snorting, appeared to regain consciousness or took an unusually long time to die. Author: Ken Ritter, Michelle L. Price, Anchorage Daily News, "Execution blocked after company objects to use of its drug," 12 July 2018 But does the royal wedding signal that white male supremacy is gasping for air? Kirsten West Savali, The Root, "Al Sharpton Claims ‘White Male Supremacy’ Is ‘On Its Last Breath’ Because Harry Married Meghan, and I Need Him To Stop Talking," 20 May 2018 But water temperatures are still chilly, and that can present danger to anyone looking to take a dip: Entering cold water can cause swimmers to gasp, inhale water then go under. Jim Ryan, OregonLive.com, "As Portland temps rise, so does allure of cold, dangerous waters," 23 Apr. 2018 There are chasms between the tourists who drop in, the street people who drop out and the residents, who, engulfed in clouds of weed smoke, often seem to be gasping for air. Leah Garchik, San Francisco Chronicle, "Paying tribute to Norm Larson, Duke of the Haight-Ashbury," 5 Apr. 2018 Wooley also was apparently shocked that Gayford was going to be the one not only caring for the baby while his partner ran the country, but might (gasp) do the laundry as well. Krystin Arneson, Glamour, "This '60 Minutes' Interview With New Zealand Prime Minister Is a Master Class on Sexism," 26 Feb. 2018

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

Verb

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

Noun

circa 1529, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for gasp

Verb

Middle English; akin to Old Norse geispa to yawn

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Statistics for gasp

Last Updated

13 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for gasp

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

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More Definitions for gasp

gasp

verb

English Language Learners Definition of gasp

: to breathe in suddenly and loudly with your mouth open because of surprise, shock, or pain
: to breathe with difficulty
: to say (something) with quick, difficult breaths

gasp

verb
\ ˈgasp How to pronounce gasp (audio) \
gasped; gasping

Kids Definition of gasp

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to breathe in suddenly and loudly with the mouth open because of surprise, shock, or pain I could see … spectators gasping at moves no human had ever made before.— Jerry Spinelli, Crash
2 : to breathe with difficulty : pant The runners were gasping after the race.
3 : to utter with quick difficult breaths “I think we're lost,” she gasped.

gasp

noun

Kids Definition of gasp (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of breathing in suddenly or with difficulty I heard the crowd's loud gasp.
2 : something gasped He let out a gasp of surprise.

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More from Merriam-Webster on gasp

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with gasp

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for gasp

Spanish Central: Translation of gasp

Nglish: Translation of gasp for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gasp for Arabic Speakers

Comments on gasp

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