ob·​sess | \əb-ˈses, äb-\
obsessed; obsessing; obsesses

Definition of obsess 

transitive verb

: to haunt or excessively preoccupy the mind of was obsessed with the idea She was obsessed with her car.

intransitive verb

: to engage in obsessive thinking : become obsessed with an idea He's always obsessing over money.

Examples of obsess in a Sentence

The war obsesses him—he talks about nothing else. You need to stop obsessing and just deal with the problem.

Recent Examples on the Web

And for mascara, I've been obsessed with Lancôme's Définicils ($28) for forever. Jillian Ruffo, Glamour, "Teresa Giudice's Beauty Routine Costs $22,077—But Are You Really That Surprised?," 7 Nov. 2018 And we’re also obsessed with all things design, including iconic architects, home decor, and everything midcentury modern. Megan Barber, Curbed, "Glamorous vintage camper is your midcentury dream home on wheels," 18 Oct. 2018 Ah-In Yoo stars as Jong-su, the quiet, ineffectual young man obsessed with his former classmade Hae-mi (Jong-seo Jeon). Tasha Robinson, The Verge, "Steven Yeun on Burning, The Walking Dead, and changing roles for Asian-Americans," 4 Nov. 2018 The whole cute lumberjack look is so fun, and is anyone else obsessed with those boots? Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, "How to Get Lara Jean's Adorable Style from "To All the Boys I've Loved Before" for Cheap," 28 Aug. 2018 Alongside Jeff Bridges's depressed former DJ, Williams plays a homeless man reeling from the death of his wife, obsessed with finding the Holy Grail and hallucinating visions of a red knight. Kelly Lawler, USA TODAY, "The 5 best Robin Williams movies to binge-watch this weekend," 13 July 2018 In a nation obsessed with soccer, most of the 84 members are rejects from their school teams. Matt Blomberg, latimes.com, "There's a reason that the soccer team rescued from a cave in Thailand was so tough and resilient," 11 July 2018 Under the watchful eye of Fox (Angelina Jolie), Wesley becomes a super-assassin, obsessed with hunting down a former Fraternity member who killed his father. Tom Philip, GQ, "Wanted Might Be the Ultimate Action Movie," 4 July 2018 Arsenal fans will hope that the player, whom former manager Thomas Tuchel once described as 'obsessed with defending', can help sure up a back line that conceded 51 goals last season. SI.com, "New Signing Sokratis Reveals How Former Dortmund Teammates Convinced Him to Come to Arsenal," 3 July 2018

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

1531, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for obsess

Latin obsessus, past participle of obsidēre to frequent, besiege, from ob- against + sedēre to sit — more at ob-, sit

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Statistics for obsess

Last Updated

27 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for obsess

The first known use of obsess was in 1531

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More Definitions for obsess



English Language Learners Definition of obsess

: to be the only person or thing that someone thinks or talks about

: to think and talk about someone or something too much


ob·​sess | \əb-ˈses \
obsessed; obsessing

Kids Definition of obsess

: to occupy the thoughts of completely or abnormally A new scheme obsesses him.

ob·​sess | \əb-ˈses, äb- \

Medical Definition of obsess 

: to preoccupy intensely or abnormally was obsessed with success

intransitive verb

: to engage in obsessive thinking solve problems rather than obsess about them— Carol Tavris

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More from Merriam-Webster on obsess

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with obsess

Spanish Central: Translation of obsess

Nglish: Translation of obsess for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of obsess for Arabic Speakers

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