obvious

adjective
ob·​vi·​ous | \ ˈäb-vē-əs How to pronounce obvious (audio) \

Definition of obvious

1 : easily discovered, seen, or understood It was obvious that things weren't working out. She stayed for obvious reasons.
2 archaic : being in the way or in front

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Other Words from obvious

obviousness noun

Choose the Right Synonym for obvious

evident, manifest, patent, distinct, obvious, apparent, plain, clear mean readily perceived or apprehended. evident implies presence of visible signs that lead one to a definite conclusion. an evident fondness for sweets manifest implies an external display so evident that little or no inference is required. manifest hostility patent applies to a cause, effect, or significant feature that is clear and unmistakable once attention has been directed to it. patent defects distinct implies such sharpness of outline or definition that no unusual effort to see or hear or comprehend is required. a distinct refusal obvious implies such ease in discovering that it often suggests conspicuousness or little need for perspicacity in the observer. the obvious solution apparent is very close to evident except that it may imply more conscious exercise of inference. for no apparent reason plain suggests lack of intricacy, complexity, or elaboration. her feelings about him are plain clear implies an absence of anything that confuses the mind or obscures the pattern. a clear explanation

Examples of obvious in a Sentence

Her doctor immediately noticed the obvious signs of the disease. She saw only the most obvious differences. It was obvious that things weren't working out. The answer seems obvious enough to me. The problem was immediately obvious to everyone in the room. He was the obvious candidate for president. The obvious question is: how did he become so successful? For obvious reasons, I would not like to reveal my name.
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Recent Examples on the Web The direct effects on internet speech are obvious—these proposals, though thankfully not yet gaining broad traction, in and of themselves raise the possibility of implementation. Justin Sherman, Wired, "The GOP's Cries of 'Censorship' Are Hurting Democracy," 7 Oct. 2020 While some of these dangers are obvious, such as household cleaners, others are lesser known. Traci Howerton, NOLA.com, "Sago palms are deadly to pets: See symptoms of poisoning and list of other toxiic plants," 7 Oct. 2020 Directly comparing the mask emoji to Apple's smiling face emoji, the similarity between the two are obvious. Allen Kim, CNN, "Apple's new face mask emoji is now hiding a smile," 6 Oct. 2020 The effect should have been obvious, though with a time lag. Jay W. Richards, National Review, "Stats Hold a Surprise: Lockdowns May Have Had Little Effect on COVID-19 Spread," 4 Oct. 2020 That might seem obvious, but a mysterious new brand called Biden Beauty just debuted today. Jenna Rosenstein, Harper's BAZAAR, "A Brand Called Biden Beauty Just Launched To Support The Democratic Nominee," 30 Sep. 2020 But there were some obvious things that needed to come out – the things that were overgrown or dead. Joanne Kempinger Demski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "This historic Whitefish Bay home was known for its accessible gardens. The new owners are restoring them.," 28 Aug. 2020 What now seems obvious to me about FC Cincinnati is that our knee-jerk reactions to these matches typically aren't reflective of the state of the team. Pat Brennan, The Enquirer, "Takeaways: FC Cincinnati's rebuild took a 3-0 gut-punch from Columbus Crew SC," 8 Sep. 2020 One that may seem obvious: to connect searches for Covid-19 symptoms to an uptick in cases, even before an outbreak has been detected. Alexandra Ossola, Quartz, "What Google’s search trend data does—and doesn’t—tell us about the spread of Covid-19," 8 Sep. 2020

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

1583, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for obvious

Latin obvius, from obviam in the way, from ob in the way of + viam, accusative of via way — more at ob-, via

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Time Traveler for obvious

Time Traveler

The first known use of obvious was in 1583

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Statistics for obvious

Last Updated

15 Oct 2020

Cite this Entry

“Obvious.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/obvious. Accessed 25 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for obvious

obvious

adjective
How to pronounce obvious (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of obvious

: easy to see or notice
: easy for the mind to understand or recognize

obvious

adjective
ob·​vi·​ous | \ ˈäb-vē-əs How to pronounce obvious (audio) \

Kids Definition of obvious

: easily found, seen, or understood He … held on to me, even after it was obvious that I was not going to fall.— Sharon Creech, Walk Two Moons

Other Words from obvious

obviously adverb
obviousness noun

obvious

adjective
ob·​vi·​ous

Legal Definition of obvious

: easily seen, discovered, or understood specifically : readily apparent to a person of ordinary skill in a particular art considering the scope and content of the prior art — see also patent

Note: An invention that is found to be obvious cannot be patented.

Other Words from obvious

obviousness noun

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