laugh

1 of 2

verb

ˈlaf How to pronounce laugh (audio)
ˈläf
laughed; laughing; laughs

intransitive verb

1
a
: to show emotion (such as mirth, joy, or scorn) with a chuckle or explosive vocal sound
The audience was laughing hysterically.
b
: to find amusement or pleasure in something
laughed at his own clumsiness
c
: to become amused or derisive
a very skeptical public laughed at our early effortsGraenum Berger
2
a
: to produce the sound or appearance of laughter
a laughing brook
b
: to be of a kind that inspires joy
the blue sky of Autumn laughs aboveAmy Lowell

transitive verb

1
: to influence or move by laughter
laughed the bad singer off the stage
2
: to utter with a laugh
laughs her consent
laughingly adverb

laugh

2 of 2

noun

1
: the act of laughing
2
a
: a cause for derision or merriment : joke
b
: an expression of scorn or mockery : jeer
3
laughs plural : diversion, sport
play baseball just for laughs

Examples of laugh in a Sentence

Verb What are you laughing about? The audience was laughing hysterically. I've never laughed so hard in my life. I couldn't stop laughing when I saw what he was wearing. I laughed out loud when I saw him. He laughed so hard I thought he'd die laughing. The movie was hilarious. We laughed our heads off. “I've never seen anything so ridiculous,” he laughed. Noun He gave a loud laugh. a joke that always gets a big laugh The movie has a lot of laughs. You're going to be a movie star? That's a laugh. See More
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
The pair were also seen laughing as Ramsay gave Madison a few twirls while dancing together in the kitchen of his restaurant. Escher Walcott, Peoplemag, 18 Feb. 2024 Shortly after the death was reported, the Russian SOTA social media channel shared footage of the opposition politician -- reportedly in court Thursday -- laughing and joking with the judge via video link. Jim Heintz, arkansasonline.com, 17 Feb. 2024 With a great sense of humor and a love of making people laugh, Fred is also a country music loving teen who is friendly and helpful. The Star, Kansas City Star, 17 Feb. 2024 Smith was in good sports about the injury on Friday joking about it on X, formally Twitter, with laughing emojis. Lawrence Dow, Fort Worth Star-Telegram, 16 Feb. 2024 His persistence and faith in his ability to make people laugh validated the unwavering support of his family, demonstrating that confidence in one's own talent can overcome any initial challenges. Javier Hasse, Forbes, 16 Feb. 2024 As the shelter shared online posts about Leonard’s return, several social media users slammed the visitors who laughed at his appearance. Simone Jasper, Miami Herald, 15 Feb. 2024 There’s tremendous comfort in laughing at Tubi movies. Niela Orr, New York Times, 14 Feb. 2024 According to the complaint, Caines and another manager read the copy in the restaurant and laughed. Julia Coin, Charlotte Observer, 6 Feb. 2024
Noun
But Martinez acknowledges with a laugh that Trump may be an odd mascot for a health-food brand. Miles Klee, Rolling Stone, 17 Feb. 2024 But as always what Clark is, really, is the last laugh. Louisa Thomas, The New Yorker, 17 Feb. 2024 Blockers not only delivers lots of laughs but also digs deep into the complexities of parent-child relationships, confronting issues like letting go and accepting change. Travis Bean, Forbes, 16 Feb. 2024 Ben’s standards for me on the pickleball court are probably close to perfection (laughs). Scott Fowler, Charlotte Observer, 13 Feb. 2024 After the laughs came the vote: 21-19, with every Democrat in favor, every Republican opposed. Laura Vozzella, Washington Post, 13 Feb. 2024 Beyond even those staggeringly amateurish filmmaking flourishes, Madame Web has none of the laughs or thrills that general audiences come to superhero movies for. James Hibberd, The Hollywood Reporter, 13 Feb. 2024 Of course, actually doing it was still quite a challenge (laughs). Billboard Japan, Billboard, 8 Feb. 2024 The last laugh might belong to him and, perhaps, Chinese rivals like Warren Buffett–backed BYD, which recently passed Tesla in global EV sales. Steve Mollman, Fortune, 8 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'laugh.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Old English hliehhan; akin to Old High German lachēn to laugh

First Known Use

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

Noun

1592, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of laugh was before the 12th century

Dictionary Entries Near laugh

Cite this Entry

“Laugh.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/laugh. Accessed 26 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

laugh

1 of 2 verb
ˈlaf How to pronounce laugh (audio)
ˈlȧf
1
a
: to show emotion (as mirth, joy, or scorn) with a chuckle or explosive vocal sound
b
: to become amused
2
: to utter with a laugh
she laughed, "What fun!"
laugher noun

laugh

2 of 2 noun
1
: the act or sound of laughing
2
a
: something funny
that game was a real laugh
b
: something deserving scorn
He's an expert? That's a laugh

More from Merriam-Webster on laugh

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