over·​state | \ˌō-vər-ˈstāt \
overstated; overstating; overstates

Definition of overstate 

transitive verb

: to state in too strong terms : exaggerate overstated his qualifications

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Other Words from overstate

overstatement \ˌō-​vər-​ˈstāt-​mənt \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for overstate


exaggerate, overdo, overdraw, put on



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Examples of overstate in a Sentence

It would be overstating the case to say that it was a matter of life or death. it appears you've somewhat overstated your computer skills, if you can't find the “on” button!

Recent Examples on the Web

Still, the impact of Lee's work and contributions to today's pop culture landscape likely cannot be overstated. Nathan Mattise, Ars Technica, "Legendary Marvel Comics creator Stan Lee has died," 12 Nov. 2018 The importance of China's recycling effort can hardly be overstated. Author: Darryl Fears, Kate Furby, Anchorage Daily News, "A giant wave of plastic garbage could flood the US, a study says," 22 June 2018 The significance of his development cannot be overstated. Brad Biggs, chicagotribune.com, "Ten questions for the Bears looking ahead to Matt Nagy's first training camp," 8 June 2018 The importance of his voice in this area cannot be overstated. Joan Biskupic, CNN, "Kennedy keeps eye toward legacy in same-sex wedding cake case," 4 June 2018 The importance of the Mazzoni Center cannot be overstated. Harold Brubaker, Philly.com, "New Mazzoni Center CEO sees `jewel' in LGBTQ health clinic," 26 May 2018 However, news organizations have long held concerns about the accuracy of exit polls, which have in recent years tended to overstate Democrats. Laurie Kellman, The Seattle Times, "Understanding the vote: New AP survey debuts Nov. 6," 5 Nov. 2018 Broadband access in tribal areas is likely even worse than previously thought because Federal Communications Commission data overstates deployment, according to a new report by the US Government Accountability Office (GAO). Jon Brodkin, Ars Technica, "FCC data exaggerates broadband access on tribal lands," 11 Sep. 2018 Zakary Dychtwald, a consultant to the tourism business in China, thinks her estimates might be overstated, but only slightly, citing Goldman Sachs data that predicts a rise to 220 million by 2025. Mark Ellwood, Condé Nast Traveler, "How Chinese Tourists Are Changing the Travel Landscape," 2 Nov. 2018

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

1792, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for overstate

Last Updated

13 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for overstate

The first known use of overstate was in 1792

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More Definitions for overstate



English Language Learners Definition of overstate

: to say that (something) is larger or greater than it really is


over·​state | \ˌō-vər-ˈstāt \
overstated; overstating

Kids Definition of overstate

: to put in too strong terms : exaggerate He overstated the usefulness of his invention.

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Comments on overstate

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