in·​tense | \ in-ˈten(t)s How to pronounce intense (audio) \

Definition of intense

1a : existing in an extreme degree The excitement was intense. intense pain
b : having or showing a characteristic in extreme degree intense colors
2 : marked by or expressive of great zeal, energy, determination, or concentration intense effort
3a : exhibiting strong feeling or earnestness of purpose an intense student
b : deeply felt

Other Words from intense

intensely adverb
intenseness noun

Examples of intense in a Sentence

He shielded his eyes from the intense flash of light. She has an intense dislike for her husband's friend. After many years of intense study, he received his medical degree. School reform is a subject of intense debate. The work requires intense concentration. He was an intense young man who was very determined to do well in school. See More
Recent Examples on the Web The fighting above ground was so intense that the older couple, from their basement, learned to differentiate between types of rockets and artillery rounds. Scott Peterson, The Christian Science Monitor, 19 May 2022 Taiwanese politics are so intense that many Taiwanese Americans maintain dual citizenship and fly back each election to participate. Frank Shyongcolumnist, Los Angeles Times, 17 May 2022 As the relationship was very intense in Season 1, Season 2 was more of a slow burn. Emily Longeretta, Variety, 16 May 2022 This is not entirely new—nothing ever is—but the crossbreeding of clownishness and politics has never been so intense. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, 16 May 2022 The fire in the area was so intense that Mr. Ravenel’s cast-iron pots melted. New York Times, 16 May 2022 For young DeSalvo, as with every boy at Lyman who joined the study, the start of his involvement in 1944 was intense, involving multiple interviews, tests, and psychological assessments made over the course of several months., 14 May 2022 Wallach and Johannsen shared that developing Foxtail’s menu was intense and took about eight months. Abigail Abesamis Demarest, Forbes, 13 May 2022 Wildfire season in Arizona began early, and is likely to be intense. The Arizona Republic, 9 May 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'intense.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of intense

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for intense

Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin intensus, from past participle of intendere to stretch out

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The first known use of intense was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

22 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Intense.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for intense


in·​tense | \ in-ˈtens How to pronounce intense (audio) \

Kids Definition of intense

1 : very great in degree : extreme intense heat
2 : done with great energy, enthusiasm, or effort intense concentration
3 : having very strong feelings an intense person

Other Words from intense

intensely adverb


in·​tense | \ in-ˈten(t)s How to pronounce intense (audio) \

Medical Definition of intense

1a : existing in an extreme degree intense anxiety
b : extremely marked or pronounced a neurodermatitis with intense itching and burning of the skin— H. G. Armstrong
c : very large or considerable intense radiation
2a : feeling deeply especially by nature or temperament
b : deeply felt intense emotions

Other Words from intense

intensely adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on intense

Nglish: Translation of intense for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of intense for Arabic Speakers


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