ob·​strep·​er·​ous | \ əb-ˈstre-p(ə-)rəs How to pronounce obstreperous (audio) , äb- \

Definition of obstreperous

1 : marked by unruly or aggressive noisiness : clamorous obstreperous merriment an obstreperous argument
2 : stubbornly resistant to control : unruly obstreperous behavior an obstreperous child

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Other Words from obstreperous

obstreperously adverb
obstreperousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for obstreperous

vociferous, clamorous, blatant, strident, boisterous, obstreperous mean so loud or insistent as to compel attention. vociferous implies a vehement shouting or calling out. vociferous cries of protest and outrage clamorous may imply insistency as well as vociferousness in demanding or protesting. clamorous demands for prison reforms blatant implies an offensive bellowing or insensitive loudness. blatant rock music a blatant clamor for impeachment strident suggests harsh and discordant noise. heard the strident cry of the crow boisterous suggests a noisiness and turbulence due to high spirits. a boisterous crowd of party goers obstreperous suggests unruly and aggressive noisiness and resistance to restraint. the obstreperous demonstrators were arrested

Did You Know?

The handy Latin prefix ob-, meaning "in the way," "against," or "toward," occurs in many Latin and English words. "Obstreperous" comes from ob- plus strepere, a verb meaning "to make a noise," so someone who is obstreperous is literally making noise to rebel against something, much like a protesting crowd or an unruly child. The word has been used in English since around the beginning of the 17th century. "Strepere" has not played a role in the formation of any other notable English words, but "ob-" words abound; these include "obese," "obnoxious," "occasion," "offend," "omit," "oppress," and "oust."

Examples of obstreperous in a Sentence

a room full of obstreperous children an obstreperous crowd protesting the government's immigration policy
Recent Examples on the Web Then Trump suffered what looked like a serious setback from his obstreperous performance in his 60 Minutes interview with Lesley Stahl. Shawn Tully, Fortune, "This data scientist’s model shows Biden is still a 3-to-1 favorite to win—but he’s fading in the home stretch," 29 Oct. 2020 The bluesman, perhaps seeing the desperation in the young promoter’s face, or maybe just obstreperous after having one too many, demanded payment. oregonlive, "‘Disaster’ Portland rock festival 50 years ago -- no, not Vortex I -- offered big stars, but drug-bust rumors scared off crowds," 11 June 2020 European countries that might once have been willing to extend some goodwill toward following U.S. requests are becoming increasingly obstreperous, frustrated by what leaders see as Trump’s go-it-alone approach. Loveday Morris, Washington Post, "Huawei 5G tie-up will not disrupt intelligence-sharing, U.S. officials say," 14 Feb. 2020 In the title role of the bustling busybody Dolly Levi, Carolee Carmello has a singing voice that’s almost too good for this obstreperous character, which (at least when Carol Channing played her) is known for her nasal whine. Christopher Arnott, courant.com, "Review: ‘Hello, Dolly!’ an old-fashioned hoot at The Bushnell," 13 Nov. 2019 The installation proceeds in an obstreperous progression of four rows on three walls, covering more than a century, from 1890 to 2017, but eschewing chronology in favor of gut instinct and dream logic. Andrea K. Scott, The New Yorker, "Reframing Modernism at the New MOMA," 12 Nov. 2019 The process can be run through her ally Adam Schiff’s Intelligence Committee rather than through the obstreperous Jerry Nadler’s Judiciary. Matthew Continetti, National Review, "Pelosi’s Impeachment Bank Shot," 5 Oct. 2019 Next, the president should direct the Department of Justice to stop its obstreperous Olmstead litigation. John Hirschauer, National Review, "Yes, the U.S. Has a Mental-Health Problem," 6 Aug. 2019 The production’s obstreperous tone overwhelms UConn’s Harriet S. Jorgensen Auditorium. Christopher Arnott, courant.com, "Review: ’Mamma Mia’ a crowded, loud party at CT Rep," 10 June 2019

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

circa 1600, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for obstreperous

Latin obstreperus, from obstrepere to clamor against, from ob- against + strepere to make a noise

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Time Traveler for obstreperous

Time Traveler

The first known use of obstreperous was circa 1600

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Statistics for obstreperous

Cite this Entry

“Obstreperous.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/obstreperous. Accessed 7 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for obstreperous



English Language Learners Definition of obstreperous

formal : difficult to control and often noisy

More from Merriam-Webster on obstreperous

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for obstreperous

Nglish: Translation of obstreperous for Spanish Speakers

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