pro·​fu·​sion | \ prə-ˈfyü-zhən How to pronounce profusion (audio) , prō- \

Definition of profusion

1 : lavish expenditure : extravagance
2 : the quality or state of being profuse
3 : great quantity : lavish display or supply snow falling in profusion

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A profusion is literally a "pouring forth", so a profusion of gifts is a wealth or abundance of gifts. A profusely illustrated book is filled to overflowing with pictures. A bad social error should be followed by profuse apologies, and profound gratitude should be expressed with profuse thanks.

Examples of profusion in a Sentence

The flowers grow in profusion. apples grow in profusion in this valley
Recent Examples on the Web The color profusion kicks off with ephemerals like lady slipper orchids, which appear from February through April. Stephanie Vermillion, Travel + Leisure, 9 Apr. 2022 Despite the recent profusion of Elijahs and Liams and Olivias and Emmas, one of the most common names in the United States is still John Smith. Susan Orlean, The New Yorker, 19 Nov. 2021 Its sandstone gorges, profusion of waterfalls, and hemlock and oak-fringed waterways are dazzling. Stephanie Vermillion, Outside Online, 14 Mar. 2022 But in the main, the carrot and stick of the PAS and Treasure Act have worked to coax out a profusion of Viking objects that otherwise might never have surfaced, particularly in the past five to ten years. Joshua Levine, Smithsonian Magazine, 30 Mar. 2022 By the next evening, the wine had exploded into a joyful profusion of strawberry, raspberry, boysenberry and wild herb aromas and flavors. Washington Post, 24 Feb. 2022 In the British capital—mockingly nicknamed Londongrad for the profusion of Russian fortunes—lawyers, bankers, and spin doctors are under pressure to stop helping oligarchs avoid scrutiny. Evan Osnos, The New Yorker, 7 Mar. 2022 The rage for hands led to a profusion of glass cake stands, chalk ware glasses, and marble trays formed to look like body parts. Lauren Mechling, Town & Country, 5 Mar. 2022 But marine life is astonishingly abundant thanks to the Antarctic Convergence, a circumpolar strip of merging oceans marked by an upwelling of deep, nutrient-rich waters that nourish a phenomenal profusion of phytoplankton and, in turn, krill. Christopher P. Baker, Travel + Leisure, 2 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'profusion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of profusion

1545, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of profusion was in 1545

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Last Updated

18 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Profusion.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for profusion


pro·​fu·​sion | \ prə-ˈfyü-zhən How to pronounce profusion (audio) \

Kids Definition of profusion

: a plentiful supply : plenty

More from Merriam-Webster on profusion

Nglish: Translation of profusion for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of profusion for Arabic Speakers


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