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

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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 According to the news outlet, Lancaster first hooked the monster fish at around 9:20 in the morning. Michael Hollan, Fox News, "Texas fisherman catches 876-pound record-breaking fish," 4 May 2021 Shares in Saudi Aramco are down 0.1% after the world's largest oil producer posted a big bottom-line beat this morning, and kept its monster quarterly $18.8 billion dividend intact. Bernhard Warner, Fortune, "Stocks are flatlining while Ethereum and Dogecoin blast threw new all-time highs," 4 May 2021 Samuel is a yards-after-the-catch monster, eluding tacklers with a unique blend of speed, agility and muscle. Andrew Krammer, Star Tribune, "Vikings mailbag: Linebacker change coming in 2022? Taking stock of NFC North?," 3 May 2021 Instead, general manager Chris Grier did the smartest thing possible by reuniting Tagovailoa with Jaylen Waddle, the Alabama yards-after-catch monster who brings Tyreek Hill to mind with his ability to compress any field to his liking. Dave Hyde,, "Hyde10: Nationally, they’re in love with Dolphins draft — comments from the pundits," 3 May 2021 Like those flapping butterfly wings in Africa setting in motion monster hurricanes in the Caribbean, minor fluctuations in demeanor can turn a sunny interaction into a superstorm of antagonism. Los Angeles Times, "As we return to normal, a new plague: stage fright in the theater of daily life," 2 May 2021 Some kids had sneaker skates, the spawn of a track shoe and a monster truck; others had the figure-skating boot. Nick Paumgarten, The New Yorker, "The Great New York City Roller-Skating Boom," 1 May 2021 After monster surges in use over the past 12 months because of the pandemic, food-delivery companies are doubling down. Laura Forman, WSJ, "For Food Delivery, Covid-19 Was a Sugar High," 30 Apr. 2021 The monster off-road pickup truck genre is well populated these days. Ezra Dyer, Car and Driver, "Tested: 2021 GMC Canyon AT4 Is Tough Enough for Most of Us," 29 Apr. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective There are other, younger humans in Godzilla vs. Kong, to further tip the monster-human scale in the wrong direction. Stephanie Zacharek, Time, "Godzilla vs. Kong Pairs Two Formidable Monster Foes—Too Bad About the People," 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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Statistics for monster

Last Updated

7 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Monster.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for monster



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

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