hang·​over | \ ˈhaŋ-ˌō-vər How to pronounce hangover (audio) \

Definition of hangover

1 : something (such as a surviving custom) that remains from what is past
2a : disagreeable physical effects following heavy consumption of alcohol or the use of drugs
b : a letdown following great excitement or excess

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Did You Know?

The effects of hangovers have been hanging around for ages. The word itself, however, has only been fermenting since the late 19th century. Originally, hangover described someone or something that remained or simply survived, but it was later distilled into common use as a word for the effects of overconsumption of alcohol or drugs. These days, hangover can also suggest an emotional letdown or an undesirable prolongation of notes or sounds from a loudspeaker.

Examples of hangover in a Sentence

She woke up with a hangover.

Recent Examples on the Web

Life without booze is more energy, less hangovers, and sounds kind of like a good thing. Tess Kornfeld, Glamour, "15 (Very) Personal Questions For Ruby Rose," 8 Aug. 2018 These men shared the victim's statement, shared the meme stating that the only thing a drunk girl should expect is a hangover, and posted calls to action to end rape culture. Annemarie Conte, Woman's Day, "The Stanford Rape Case Proves That Sexual Assault Is Not Just a Woman's Issue," 10 June 2016 Turns out, according to Anne, parenting and hangovers aren’t a great combination. Lucy Wood, Marie Claire, "This Is Why Anne Hathaway Has Given Up Alcohol," 22 Jan. 2019 The following morning, hangovers were nursed over brunch at the chateau. John Dolan, Harper's BAZAAR, "This Couple Didn't Believe in Love at First Sight–Until It Happened to Them," 6 Aug. 2018 And then someone told me that the Phillies had blown the pennant that fall and that the city was still experiencing a hangover. Frank Fitzpatrick, Philly.com, "Philadelphia sports broadcasting icon Al 'Big Al' Meltzer dies," 14 June 2018 That party ended in the worst economic hangover the world has seen in a half-century: One of the world’s great oil producers obliterated by the sheer greed and incompetence of a ruling party hiding beneath a veneer of Socialist ideology. Anatoly Kurmanaev, WSJ, "The Tragedy of Venezuela," 24 May 2018 For the people of St. Pierre and Miquelon, an economic hangover remained. Marc Wortman, Smithsonian, "This Tiny French Archipelago Became America’s Alcohol Warehouse During Prohibition," 17 Jan. 2018 Joy's Day-After Detox The key to getting rid of that morning-after food hangover is avoiding foods that cause water retention (like bread and pasta) and adding ones that help flush out extra salt (like fruits and veggies). Joy Bauer, Ms, Woman's Day, "How to Overcome Overeating," 20 Dec. 2011

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

1894, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for hangover

Last Updated

9 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for hangover

The first known use of hangover was in 1894

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More Definitions for hangover



English Language Learners Definition of hangover

: a sick feeling or condition that comes after drinking too much alcohol at an earlier time


hang·​over | \ -ˌō-vər How to pronounce hangover (audio) \

Medical Definition of hangover

: disagreeable physical effects (as headache or nausea) following heavy consumption of alcohol or the use of drugs

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More from Merriam-Webster on hangover

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hangover

Spanish Central: Translation of hangover

Nglish: Translation of hangover for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hangover for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about hangover

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