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 Of course, the Gravity Gloves also prove compellingly overpowered in one cool moment. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Ten minutes of Half-Life: Alyx: The biggest VR goosebumps we’ve ever had," 2 Mar. 2020 The seasoning on the pompano, served with skin-on as a daily special, enhanced and didn’t overpower the delicate fish. Michael Mayo, sun-sentinel.com, "Review: Oceanic has fine seafood and a view, but service isn’t shipshape," 4 Dec. 2019 Ohio State overpowered Wisconsin in its last game, 38-7, before heading into a bye last weekend. Nathan Baird, cleveland, "Ohio State vs. Maryland LIVE STREAM (11/9/19) | How to watch college football online | Time, TV, channel," 6 Nov. 2019 Stephen Strasburg turned in another dominant playoff outing, Max Scherzer overpowered Los Angeles for an inning out of the bullpen and the Washington Nationals held off the Dodgers 4-2 Friday night to even their NL Division Series at a game apiece. Beth Harris, baltimoresun.com, "Nationals hold off Dodgers for 4-2 victory, even NLDS," 5 Oct. 2019 Though most respondents believed that unethical behavior occurs among all influential people, that cynicism did not overpower a belief that those groups care about others at least some of the time. Heather Murphy, New York Times, "Americans Trust Police More Than Congress, Study Finds," 20 Sep. 2019 Often used with honey or in desserts, lavender does not overpower turkey but enhances its richness and warmth. Fox News, "8 excellent, no-fail Thanksgiving turkey recipes," 22 Nov. 2016 Hernandez’s sinking fastball has been overpowering at 97 mph. Dallas News, "These 5 Rangers have been the biggest spring breakers. But, how much does that tell us?," 7 Mar. 2020 Other times, his voice was bold and restless, almost overpowering the track. Hua Hsu, The New Yorker, "Moses Sumney’s World of Possibilities," 2 Mar. 2020

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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Time Traveler for overpower

Time Traveler

The first known use of overpower was in 1597

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Statistics for overpower

Last Updated

30 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Overpower.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/overpower. Accessed 10 Apr. 2020.

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More Definitions for overpower


How to pronounce overpower (audio)

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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