over·​pow·​er | \ ˌō-vər-ˈpau̇(-ə)r How to pronounce overpower (audio) \
overpowered; overpowering; overpowers

Definition of overpower

transitive verb

1 : to overcome by superior force : subdue
2 : to affect with overwhelming intensity the stench overpowered us
3 : to provide with more power than is needed or desirable a dangerously overpowered car

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Other Words from overpower

overpoweringly \ ˌō-​vər-​ˈpau̇(-​ə)r-​iŋ-​lē How to pronounce overpoweringly (audio) \ adverb

Examples of overpower in a Sentence

She was able to overpower her attacker. The police overpowered the man and handcuffed him. The troops were overpowered by the stronger enemy forces. His personality overpowers everyone else's. The delicate taste of the wine was overpowered by the spiciness of the food.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Neither flavor was overwhelming but the mint definitely overpowered the dark chocolate (and for people who don't like mint, well, this isn't for you!). Sophia Caraballo, Woman's Day, "We Got an Exclusive First Taste of the New Kit-Kat Duos Mint + Dark Chocolate," 25 Apr. 2019 To capitalize on the south-facing, downward-sloping site, Kevin designed the first floor of the home about 13 feet below street level to create a multi-level house that maximizes views and does not overpower the neighborhood. Lisa Boone, latimes.com, "A tiny bungalow is reborn as a modernist, eco-friendly Craftsman," 3 July 2018 Bikes this overpowered sound intimidating, but like modern supercars, electronics will intervene before catastrophe. Alexander George, Popular Mechanics, "The (New) Biggest Motorcycle Engine You Can Buy," 2 May 2019 When the pilots failed to regain control of the aircraft, these people said, the crew reconnected power and MCAS kicked in again, eventually overpowering pilot efforts to pull out of the fatal dive. Andrew Tangel, WSJ, "Pilots Take Aim at Instructions for Boeing 737 MAX," 3 Apr. 2019 At least 400 prisoners escaped from a jail on Sunday after inmates overpowered guards. Suliman Ali Zway, The Seattle Times, "In Libya, Facebook is used to buy arms, locate foes and kill them," 3 Sep. 2018 Emphasizing the bad consequences of using, whether by pushing someone to rock bottom or by threatening her with prison, is ineffective because the part of the mind that drives addiction can overpower thoughts about consequences. Brendan De Kenessey, Vox, "People are dying because we misunderstand how those with addiction think," 16 Mar. 2018 Russia still does not have the ability to roll back the post-1990 democratic revolution, overpower the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, or dissolve the EU. Walter Russell Mead, WSJ, "Putin Is Weak. Europe Doesn’t Have to Be," 23 July 2018 Purdue 74, Cal State Fullerton 48: The Boilermakers overpowered the Titans with their size and skill. Usa Today Sports, USA TODAY, "Friday at the 2018 NCAA tournament: No. 13 seed Marshall shocks Wichita State," 16 Mar. 2018

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

1597, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for overpower

Last Updated

9 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for overpower

The first known use of overpower was in 1597

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More Definitions for overpower



English Language Learners Definition of overpower

: to defeat or gain control of (someone or something) by using force
: to affect (someone) very strongly or severely
: to have more strength, force, or effect than (someone or something)


over·​pow·​er | \ ˌō-vər-ˈpau̇-ər How to pronounce overpower (audio) \
overpowered; overpowering

Kids Definition of overpower

1 : to overcome by greater force : defeat The enemy was overpowered.
2 : to affect by being too strong The odor overpowered us.

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