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mon·​strous ˈmän(t)-strəs How to pronounce monstrous (audio)
: having extraordinary often overwhelming size : gigantic
stuffing a monstrous sandwich down his throatMike Flaherty
a monstrous skyscraper
: extraordinarily ugly or vicious : horrible
a monstrous crime
monstrous mayhem
: shockingly wrong or ridiculous
the legend assumed monstrous proportionsLouis Untermeyer
a monstrous miscalculation
: deviating greatly from the natural form or character : abnormal
a monstrous melon
: very great
used as an intensive
a monstrous hammering on his doorG. D. Brown
a monstrous hangover
: having the qualities or appearance of a monster
came face to face with a monstrous creatureLester David
obsolete : teeming with monsters
obsolete : strange, unnatural
monstrously adverb
monstrousness noun


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chiefly dialectal
: very, extremely
a monstrous long raftMark Twain
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

Adjective It was monstrous of him to keep the truth from them all those years. a monstrous melon that was clearly not fit to eat Adverb a monstrous pretty gal, she was
Recent Examples on the Web
By Don Steinberg May 30, 2024 7:45 AM EDT As AI systems proliferate, the demand for computing power to crunch large data sets has become monstrous. Don Steinberg, TIME, 30 May 2024 Today, what has been done to all hospitals in the Gaza Strip is monstrous. Reader Commentary, Baltimore Sun, 18 Apr. 2024 Bernhardt plays a barbarian cursed by a magical talisman, leading him into conflict with a malevolent wizard and monstrous assassins. Naman Ramachandran, Variety, 18 May 2024 Upstairs in Peyton’s bed, there’s a monstrous new boyfriend named Skate (James Nelson Joyce). Leslie Felperin, The Hollywood Reporter, 16 May 2024 See all Example Sentences for monstrous 

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

Word History

First Known Use


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 6


1569, in the meaning defined above

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

Dictionary Entries Near monstrous

Cite this Entry

“Monstrous.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


: unusually large : gigantic
: very ugly or vicious : horrible
: shockingly wrong or ridiculous
: very different from the usual form : abnormal
monstrously adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on monstrous

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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