gran·​di·​ose | \ˈgran-dē-ˌōs, ˌgran-dē-ˈōs\

Definition of grandiose 

1 : characterized by affectation of grandeur or splendor or by absurd exaggeration They did not believe his grandiose claims.

2 : impressive because of uncommon largeness, scope, effect, or grandeur had grandiose plans for the city

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Other Words from grandiose

grandiosely adverb
grandioseness noun
grandiosity \ˌgran-​dē-​ˈä-​sə-​tē \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for grandiose

grand, magnificent, imposing, stately, majestic, grandiose mean large and impressive. grand adds to greatness of size the implications of handsomeness and dignity. a grand staircase magnificent implies an impressive largeness proportionate to scale without sacrifice of dignity or good taste. magnificent paintings imposing implies great size and dignity but especially stresses impressiveness. an imposing edifice stately may suggest poised dignity, erectness of bearing, handsomeness of proportions, ceremonious deliberation of movement. the stately procession majestic combines the implications of imposing and stately and usually adds a suggestion of solemn grandeur. a majestic waterfall grandiose implies a size or scope exceeding ordinary experience grandiose hydroelectric projects but is most commonly applied derogatorily to inflated pretension or absurd exaggeration. grandiose schemes

Examples of grandiose in a Sentence

He was full of grandiose ideas. a grandiose plan to upgrade the entire interstate highway system in 10 years

Recent Examples on the Web

All about was a wild and grandiose landscape where her children, half starved, ran about naked. Claire Tomalin, WSJ, "Five Best: Claire Tomalin on the Best Books About Family Trouble," 22 Nov. 2018 Those of us who’ve been through a political philosophy class or three know that the concept of equal opportunity is devilishly hard to pin down in a way that doesn’t become either trivial or grandiose. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "Centrist Democrats are out of ideas," 30 July 2018 Like her iconic character, Torres was once a professional dancer, who couldn't believe she was cast to play an dancing instructor given her, erm, grandiose persona. Diana Bruk, Country Living, "This is What the Cast of "Gilmore Girls" is Like in Real Life," 24 Oct. 2016 People speaking out against me made an obvious, grandiose point of referring to me with female honorifics and pronouns. Gavin Grimm, Teen Vogue, "Gavin Grimm on Turning His Fight Into a Conversation for All Transgender Youth," 27 Aug. 2018 Seating is largely al fresco, with the main dining area covered by a huge (and somewhat grandiose) curved awning. Audrey Phoon, Condé Nast Traveler, "5 Best Day Trips from Singapore," 5 Mar. 2018 In pushing such grandiose schemes, the crown prince may want to create the sense of a bright future, and a testing-ground for new ideas. The Economist, "Breaking the curseWhy Gulf economies struggle to wean themselves off oil," 21 June 2018 Trump, after his trip overseas to Asia and the Middle East, crowed to aides for days about the grandiose treatment — and the Brits hope to reproduce some of that magic. Josh Dawsey, Washington Post, "In Britain, Trump will see castles and the queen and steer clear of protesters," 6 July 2018 Initially, locals were understandably distrustful about Chicagoans moving in on their turf with grandiose plans for a fancy resort that would cater to the well-heeled but would distance itself from the community. Gary D'amato, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "D'Amato: How Sand Valley Golf Resort is transforming central Wisconsin," 30 June 2018

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

1818, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for grandiose

French, from Italian grandioso, from grande great, from Latin grandis

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Statistics for grandiose

Last Updated

18 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for grandiose

The first known use of grandiose was in 1818

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More Definitions for grandiose



English Language Learners Definition of grandiose

: seeming to be impressive or intended to be impressive but not really possible or practical


gran·​di·​ose | \ˈgran-dē-ˌōs \

Kids Definition of grandiose

: overly grand or exaggerated He would … fire his warriors with grandiose schemes and wild ideas.— Brian Jacques, Redwall


gran·​di·​ose | \ˈgran-dē-ˌōs, ˌgran-dē-ˈ \

Medical Definition of grandiose 

: characterized by affectation of grandeur or splendor or by absurd exaggeration a paranoid patient with grandiose delusions

Other Words from grandiose

grandiosely adverb
grandiosity \ˌgran-​dē-​ˈäs-​ət-​ē \ noun, plural -ties

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