out·​do | \ ˌau̇t-ˈdü How to pronounce outdo (audio) \
outdid\ ˌau̇t-​ˈdid How to pronounce outdid (audio) \; outdone\ ˌau̇t-​ˈdən How to pronounce outdone (audio) \; outdoing\ ˌau̇t-​ˈdü-​iŋ How to pronounce outdoing (audio) \; outdoes\ ˌau̇t-​ˈdəz How to pronounce outdoes (audio) \

Definition of outdo

transitive verb

1 : to go beyond in action or performance

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Choose the Right Synonym for outdo

exceed, surpass, transcend, excel, outdo, outstrip mean to go or be beyond a stated or implied limit, measure, or degree. exceed implies going beyond a limit set by authority or established by custom or by prior achievement. exceed the speed limit surpass suggests superiority in quality, merit, or skill. the book surpassed our expectations transcend implies a rising or extending notably above or beyond ordinary limits. transcended the values of their culture excel implies preeminence in achievement or quality and may suggest superiority to all others. excels in mathematics outdo applies to a bettering or exceeding what has been done before. outdid herself this time outstrip suggests surpassing in a race or competition. outstripped other firms in sales

Examples of outdo in a Sentence

Smaller companies often outdo larger ones in customer service. My sister always tried to outdo me in school. She scored 20 points in the first game. Not to be outdone, I scored 30 points myself in the second game.
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Colombian man reportedly caught smuggling cocaine under a badly fitting toupee may have been outdone. Hannah Knowles, Washington Post, "Man crashes van with $140 million worth of meth into parked police cars in ‘easiest drug bust’ ever, police say," 23 July 2019 Duval had started with two birdies but made his own eight at the fifth and then outdid that in spectacular fashion at the long seventh. Rob Hodgetts, CNN, "Rory McIlroy, David Duval suffer horror holes at The Open," 18 July 2019 Lauren Underwood, of Naperville, and Sean Casten, of Downers Grove — both Democrats who sailed in during the blue wave to flip Republican seats — raked in the donations, outdoing their rivals. Lisa Donovan, chicagotribune.com, "The Spin: Mayor Lori Lightfoot announces top 5 sites for a city casino - and none are downtown," 17 July 2019 Vogueworld The Wades Turned the Red Carpet Into Family Night Sure, Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade are already one of the world’s most fashionable couples but every so often the pair outdo themselves. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "The Wades Turned the Red Carpet Into Family Night," 12 July 2019 Wear your sunglasses for a December nights visit to the 3600 block of Garrison Street, where neighbors outdo each other with holiday displays to write home about. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Point Loma: Birthplace of San Diego, ‘where the water runs so deep’," 28 June 2019 Defender Jonjoe Kenny did his very best to outdo his former Everton teammate just eight minutes later, powering a 25-yard strike into the bottom corner to give England the lead once more. SI.com, "UEFA European Under-21 Championship Roundup: Romania Stay Top While England Remain Winless," 25 June 2019 But in the final round, he was outdone by one by the Mets’ Pete Alonso, 23-22. Pat Mcmanamon, SFChronicle.com, "Uphill climb as A’s Matt Chapman is out early in Home Run Derby," 9 July 2019 The Democratic presidential candidates are busy staking out positions, preparing policy statements and trying to outdo each other in wonkiness. Steve Chapman, chicagotribune.com, "Column: A president who sleeps on the job? We would all rest easier.," 21 June 2019

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

circa 1616, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for outdo

Last Updated

6 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for outdo

The first known use of outdo was circa 1616

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More Definitions for outdo



English Language Learners Definition of outdo

: to do better than (someone or something) : to be more successful than (someone or something)


out·​do | \ au̇t-ˈdü How to pronounce outdo (audio) \
outdid\ -​ˈdid \; outdone\ -​ˈdən \; outdoing\ -​ˈdü-​iŋ \; outdoes\ -​ˈdəz \

Kids Definition of outdo

: to do better than : surpass He always tries to outdo everyone.

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More from Merriam-Webster on outdo

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with outdo

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for outdo

Spanish Central: Translation of outdo

Nglish: Translation of outdo for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of outdo for Arabic Speakers

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