hor·​ren·​dous | \hȯ-ˈren-dəs, hä-, hə-\

Definition of horrendous 

: extremely bad or unpleasant : horrible, dreadful His audition was horrendous. horrendous crimes

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Other Words from horrendous

horrendously adverb

Examples of horrendous in a Sentence

Her taste in clothes is horrendous. a horrendous explosion shook the building

Recent Examples on the Web

The daughter was in horrendous pain and had been prescribed Percocet for her injuries. Hayley Krischer, Marie Claire, "How Heroin Came for Middle-Class Moms," 20 Aug. 2018 Most cobalt is mined in the Democratic Republic of Congo amid horrendous labor conditions. Cyrus Farivar, Ars Technica, "Newer Tesla batteries contain Cuban cobalt, likely illegal under US sanctions," 20 July 2018 Again & Again owner Leslie Pritchard looked past this couch's horrendous facade (what is going on with this dated fabric combo!?!) and saw potential. The Editors At House Beautiful, House Beautiful, "Furniture Rehab: The Ugliest Couch Ever," 3 Mar. 2014 The reason to be concerned: The Royals really are horrendous, their 21-39 record putting them in a peer group with teams like the White Sox and Reds and Orioles and Marlins that aren't trying to win. Sam Mellinger, kansascity, "Mellinger Minutes: Trump kicks the NFL, Chiefs fans are cocky (?) and Mahomes' endorsements," 5 June 2018 The Reds have been scratching their way back from their horrendous start for 10 ½ weeks now. John Fay, Cincinnati.com, "Cincinnati Reds question: How high can they go?," 28 June 2018 The Orioles are in the midst of a horrendous season, and that has been reflected in the stands. Peter Schmuck, baltimoresun.com, "Orioles' Chris Davis hopes to feel more at home after big weekend in Atlanta," 26 June 2018 The horrendous actions by Cambridge Analytica, a voter-profiling company, and Aleksander Kogan, a Russian-American researcher, raise serious questions about privacy, social media, democracy and fraud. Anchorage Daily News, "Cambridge Analytica behaved appallingly, but don’t overreact," 20 Mar. 2018 No amount of electronics updates or computer simulations can replace the horrendous violence of hitting a telephone pole at 40 mph. Mark Phelan, Detroit Free Press, "Why the Ford Explorer and Jeep Grand Cherokee flunked their crash tests," 12 June 2018

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

1659, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for horrendous

Latin horrendus, from gerundive of horrēre

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Last Updated

14 Nov 2018

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The first known use of horrendous was in 1659

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English Language Learners Definition of horrendous

: very bad or unpleasant


hor·​ren·​dous | \hȯ-ˈren-dəs, hä-, hə-\

Kids Definition of horrendous

: very bad horrendous traffic horrendous trouble

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Comments on horrendous

What made you want to look up horrendous? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to clear from alleged fault or guilt

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