phenomena

noun
phe·​nom·​e·​na | \ fi-ˈnä-mə-nə, -ˌnä\
plural phenomenas

Definition of phenomena

nonstandard

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Can phenomena be used as a singular?: Usage Guide

Phenomena has been in occasional use as a singular since the early 18th century, as has the plural phenomenas. Our evidence shows that singular phenomena is primarily a speech form used by poets, critics, and professors, among others, but one that sometimes turns up in edited prose. Although it seemed like a fad a few years ago, Twitter has evolved into a phenomena with more than 200 million users … — Myron P. Medcalf It is etymologically no more irregular than stamina and agenda, but it has nowhere near the frequency of use that they have, and while they are standard, phenomena is still rather borderline.

Examples of phenomena in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

But new technologies, working together synergistically, have brought quantum phenomena closer to us than ever before. Frank Wilczek, WSJ, "The Second Quantum Revolution," 18 Oct. 2018 Many things in warfare, naturally, are often a complex byproduct of a range of more subjectively determined factors – impacted by concepts, personalities, individual psychology, historical nuances and larger sociological phenomena. Kris Osborn, Fox News, "Pentagon makes massive new AI push for tanks, ships, weapons, drones and networks," 19 July 2018 Cross-sectional studies find correlations between different phenomena at one point in time. Vanessa Schipani, USA TODAY, "Fact check: Is there a link between media violence and mass shootings?," 8 Mar. 2018 Florence's temporary weakening this morning can be attributed to a phenomena known as eye wall replacement. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Florence Makes Landfall, Hundreds Already Need Evacuation," 14 Sep. 2018 The Lightning Zeus is depicted as such to mirror the geophysical phenomena of Mount Ainos, known for its spectacular thunderstorms. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "Assassin's Creed: Odyssey's hidden Historical Locations map is stuffed with Ancient Greek lore," 11 Oct. 2018 The only known phenomena with a higher density than a neutron star is a black hole. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Cosmic Oddity Challenges What We Know About Pulsars," 19 Sep. 2018 Right-wing internet phenomena, bolstered by Trump’s own tweets, have found their way straight to the pulpit. Tara Isabella Burton, Vox, "What one pastor’s anti-Nike protest says about religion and nationalism in America," 14 Sep. 2018 Other patterns derive from snow fences, doilies, smoke rings and other unlikely phenomena, sometimes photographed, manipulated and used as springboards for drawing or collaging. Karen Wilkin, WSJ, "‘Frank Stella Unbound’ Review: Leaving His Mark on Literature," 25 June 2018

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

1708, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for phenomena

Last Updated

17 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for phenomena

The first known use of phenomena was in 1708

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More from Merriam-Webster on phenomena

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with phenomena

Nglish: Translation of phenomena for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of phenomena for Arabic Speakers

Comments on phenomena

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a complex dispute or argument

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