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

Definition of monster

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : an animal of strange or terrifying shape a mythical monster a sea monster … 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. That's why I was born in my grandmother's house—a grand, brick Federal monster of a house.— John Irving
2a : an animal or plant of abnormal form or structure
b : one who deviates from normal or acceptable behavior or character an immoral monster
3 : a threatening force the same monster—Destiny … that rolls every civilization to doom— W. L. Sullivan
4 : something monstrous especially : a person of unnatural or extreme ugliness, deformity, wickedness, or cruelty a cruel monster of a father
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

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 The 6-3, 225-pound Burks is a monster in the open field, averaging 8.6 yards after the catch since 2020, according to PFF. C.j. Doon,, 14 Jan. 2022 Also, DeForest Buckner is a monster on the defensive line who consistently commands double-teams. Evan Sidery, Forbes, 1 Jan. 2022 Guard Jacob Horton led Foothill with 18 points while 6-7 Braedyn Bernard had 16 points and was a monster on the boards with 15 rebounds. John Maffei, San Diego Union-Tribune, 29 Dec. 2021 Which pushes The Witcher’s season two finale to a question the show has been asking all along: What is a monster, and what can be done to stop one? Scott Meslow, Vulture, 19 Dec. 2021 If the Spurs struggled with Hayward and the Hornets — who remained without chief catalyst LaMelo Ball — the Jazz might prove to be a monster. Jeff Mcdonald, San Antonio Express-News, 16 Dec. 2021 A few years earlier, in 1846, a rare late October monster snowstorm socked the region around what later was named Lake Tahoe, leading to one of the ugliest chapters in California history. George Skelton, Los Angeles Times, 28 Oct. 2021 The side effects include superhuman strength, a sensitivity to light, the occasional transformation into a monster and a taste for Type O. David Fear, Rolling Stone, 5 Jan. 2022 Sarah Millican, who is usually a giggle monster in these, seems angry about getting the gig. Bethy Squires, Vulture, 1 Jan. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective As Yennefer runs off with Ciri, Geralt stays behind, and The Witcher delivers one of the better non-monster fight scenes of its entire run. Scott Meslow, Vulture, 17 Dec. 2021 This set of beach toys from Kohl's is only $10, and features an adorably themed set of tools like a sifter, rake, shovel, mini-monster truck and more. Felicity Warner, USA TODAY, 29 June 2021 There are other, younger humans in Godzilla vs. Kong, to further tip the monster-human scale in the wrong direction. Stephanie Zacharek, Time, 31 Mar. 2021

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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Time Traveler for monster

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near monster

mons pubis



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Statistics for monster

Last Updated

19 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Monster.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for monster



English Language Learners Definition of monster

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a strange or horrible imaginary creature
: 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)

: 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

More from Merriam-Webster on monster

Nglish: Translation of monster for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of monster for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about monster


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