mon·​ster | \ ˈmän(t)-stər How to pronounce monster (audio) \

Definition of monster

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : an animal or plant of abnormal form or structure a mythical monster a sea monster
b : one who deviates from normal or acceptable behavior or character an immoral monster
2 : a threatening force the same monster — Destiny … that rolls every civilization to doom— W. L. Sullivan
3a : an animal of strange or terrifying shape visualize this scaleless monster, eight or nine feet long, sprawling in the shade by the side of the mud pools— W. E. Swinton
b : one unusually large for its kind That truck is a monster.
4 : something monstrous especially : a person of unnatural or extreme ugliness, deformity, wickedness, or cruelty His father was a monster who beat his children for no reason.
5 : one that is highly successful That movie was a monster at the box office.



Definition of monster (Entry 2 of 2)

: enormous or impressive especially in size, extent, or numbers

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Examples of monster in a Sentence

Noun That car is a monster. Inflation has become an economic monster. Adjective The movie turned out to be a monster hit.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Players chose one of four Vault Hunters to explore the world, fight bandits, monsters and other villains, and stockpile an array of weapons and gear of different rarities. Brett Molina, USA TODAY, "'Borderlands 3' launched Friday. Here's everything we know about video game," 13 Sep. 2019 Trapped townspeople face monsters inside and out after a supernatural fog engulfs their Maine community. Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week Sept. 15, 2019: ‘Alien,’ ‘Aliens’ and more," 13 Sep. 2019 And few fans of the original series will soon forget terrifying monsters like the Ghastly Grinner. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "The Midnight Society is back in trailer for Are You Afraid of the Dark? reboot," 13 Sep. 2019 Everyone knows that no one is safe, especially when all those crazy monsters start to take over Hawkins, Indiana with the help of some pretty evil people that are trying to use them for their own gain. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, ""Stranger Things" Fan Figures Out Crazy Coincidence Between Characters That Keep Getting Killed," 11 Sep. 2019 The experience, first announced in July, will feature three haunted houses, four bars and about 150 monsters on the premises. Dewayne Bevil,, "Debut of Dark Horizon, a Halloween pop-up attraction, delayed," 5 Sep. 2019 While Boone, Buford and Williams are King’s three-headed monster, there are several more players on the roster gaining college scouts’ attention. Wright Wilson, Detroit Free Press, "Why Detroit King's top prospects committed to major CFB programs out of state," 1 Sep. 2019 Using a camera stabilization system, Kossakovsky has been able to get steady shots of the schooner’s co-skippers steelily coping with frighteningly relentless monster 30-foot waves. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Review: ‘Aquarela’ proves how to make an exciting documentary about water," 30 Aug. 2019 Kupp, Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods provide a three-headed monster at receiver, the likes of which Cleveland hasn’t faced since the Chiefs last November. Ellis L. Williams,, "Browns vs. Rams preview: 5 things to know about Cleveland’s next opponent," 17 Sep. 2019

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


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1837, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for monster

Noun and Adjective

Middle English monstre, from Anglo-French, from Latin monstrum omen, monster, from monēre to warn — more at mind

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Statistics for monster

Last Updated

26 Oct 2019

Time Traveler for monster

The first known use of monster was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for monster


How to pronounce monster (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of monster

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a strange or horrible imaginary creature
informal : something that is extremely or unusually large
: a powerful person or thing that cannot be controlled and that causes many problems



English Language Learners Definition of monster (Entry 2 of 2)

informal : very popular and successful


mon·​ster | \ ˈmän-stər How to pronounce monster (audio) \

Kids Definition of monster

1 : a strange or horrible creature
2 : something unusually large
3 : an extremely wicked or cruel person


mon·​ster | \ ˈmän(t)-stər How to pronounce monster (audio) \

Medical Definition of monster

: an animal or plant displaying a major developmental abnormality in form or structure

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Comments on monster

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


to speed up the process or progress of

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