mon·​strous | \ˈmän(t)-strəs \

Definition of monstrous 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 obsolete : strange, unnatural

2 : having extraordinary often overwhelming size : gigantic stuffing a monstrous sandwich down his throat— Mike Flaherty a monstrous skyscraper

3a : having the qualities or appearance of a monster came face to face with a monstrous creature— Lester David

b obsolete : teeming with monsters

4a : extraordinarily ugly or vicious : horrible a monstrous crime monstrous mayhem

b : shockingly wrong or ridiculous the legend assumed monstrous proportions— Louis Untermeyer a monstrous miscalculation

5 : deviating greatly from the natural form or character : abnormal a monstrous melon

6 : very great used as an intensive a monstrous hammering on his door— G. D. Browna monstrous hangover



Definition of monstrous (Entry 2 of 2)

chiefly dialectal

: very, extremely a monstrous long raft— Mark Twain

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Other Words from monstrous


monstrously adverb
monstrousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for monstrous


monstrous, prodigious, tremendous, stupendous mean extremely impressive. monstrous implies a departure from the normal (as in size, form, or character) and often carries suggestions of deformity, ugliness, or fabulousness. the monstrous waste of the project prodigious suggests a marvelousness exceeding belief, usually in something felt as going far beyond a previous maximum (as of goodness, greatness, intensity, or size). made a prodigious effort and rolled the stone aside tremendous may imply a power to terrify or inspire awe. the tremendous roar of the cataract stupendous implies a power to stun or astound, usually because of size, numbers, complexity, or greatness beyond description. a stupendous volcanic eruption

Examples of monstrous in a Sentence


It was monstrous of him to keep the truth from them all those years. a monstrous melon that was clearly not fit to eat


a monstrous pretty gal, she was
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Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

The latest version of it, called GRCh38, has a monstrous 3.1 gigabases of information—but that's still not enough. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "DNA data from Africans reveals sequences that we’d missed," 24 Nov. 2018 Witnesses say a strong summer storm, quote, came out of nowhere, sparking high winds and monstrous waves. Fox News, "Missouri Governor Mike Parson addresses tragic boat accident," 21 July 2018 Heavier rain was expected later in the day in the Paradise burn area, where a monstrous wildfire has killed at least 81 people and destroyed more than 13,000 homes. Kathleen Ronayne, The Seattle Times, "Light rain falling in N California could hurt search effort," 21 Nov. 2018 To make matters worse, the monstrous Babadook intrudes into their house, endangering them both. Kate Robertson, Marie Claire, "13 Feminist Horror Movies That Will Make You Appreciate the Genre in a Whole New Way," 18 July 2018 There was one of those monstrous several-layered chocolate cakes that seem out-of-date to me, and didn't really pay off in chocolatey-ness. Polly Campbell,, "Clyborne Provisions and Spirits is a suburban surprise," 27 June 2018 There's a reason their monstrous popularity put K-beauty on the map once word got out about their popularity in Korea. Allure, "The 11 Best BB Creams for Every Skin Type," 3 Oct. 2018 The 2013-2016 Ebola outbreak in west Africa (in which the woman was infected) was monstrous. Beth Mole, Ars Technica, "Ebola mysteriously hid in a woman for more than a year before spreading," 27 July 2018 Another crossed the plate on Suarez’s monstrous, 451-foot shot to center, saddling Hand with his first two-homer game since that meeting with the Royals. Jeff Sanders,, "Hand's scoreless streak ends in weird way vs. Reds," 10 Aug. 2017

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


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1569, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for monstrous

Last Updated

11 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for monstrous

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

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More Definitions for monstrous



English Language Learners Definition of monstrous

: extremely or unusually large

: very wrong or unfair

: very ugly, cruel, or vicious


mon·​strous | \ˈmän-strəs \

Kids Definition of monstrous

1 : unusually large : enormous He has a monstrous appetite.

2 : very bad or wrong a monstrous injustice

3 : having the qualities or appearance of a monster The monstrous creature approached.

Other Words from monstrous

monstrously adverb

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Comments on monstrous

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


a nest or breeding place

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