over·​whelm·​ing ˌō-vər-ˈ(h)wel-miŋ How to pronounce overwhelming (audio)
: tending or serving to overwhelm
overwhelming force
overwhelming evidence
also : extreme, great
overwhelming indifference
an overwhelming majority

Examples of overwhelming in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web This intensifies the flavor, which most game aficionados prefer—but the powerful, high smell of raw birds can be overwhelming. Olivia Potts, Longreads, 15 Feb. 2024 The never-ending list of color swatches available might feel a bit overwhelming, but Galloway recommends sticking with colors that have warm undertones. Blake Bakkila, Sunset Magazine, 15 Feb. 2024 In their roles, the dogs help young patients at the hospital take medication, attend physical therapy, and cope with the often overwhelming experience of being hospitalized. Kelli Bender, Peoplemag, 15 Feb. 2024 The first tournament, Unifying Las Cañas, which ran from March to July in 2023, was an overwhelming success. Whitney Eulich, The Christian Science Monitor, 14 Feb. 2024 Shipping is a $14 trillion-plus industry, and the overwhelming majority of the world’s goods—a colossal 90 percent of them—spend time at sea. Virginia Heffernan, WIRED, 14 Feb. 2024 For GroupM at the Super Bowl this meant securing the Adidas presence on the Sphere, which has quickly become the single most unique out-of-home display even amidst the overwhelming glitter of Vegas. Howard Homonoff, Forbes, 13 Feb. 2024 In talking about their performances, the overwhelming response was that the shows had an immense energy. Joshua Minsoo Kim, Rolling Stone, 12 Feb. 2024 Democrats have a history of trying to elevate a Republican into one of the top two spots to create an easy contest, given the overwhelming Democratic voter registration advantage in the state. Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times, 9 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'overwhelming.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1567, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of overwhelming was in 1567

Dictionary Entries Near overwhelming

Cite this Entry

“Overwhelming.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/overwhelming. Accessed 28 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


over·​whelm·​ing ˌō-vər-ˈhwel-miŋ How to pronounce overwhelming (audio)
: great sense 4, extreme
an overwhelming response
overwhelmingly adverb
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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