\ˈpräm \

Definition of prom 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a formal dance given by a high school or college class

2 British : promenade sense 2

Definition of prom (Entry 2 of 2)

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for prom

Synonyms: Noun

ball, cotillion (also cotillon), dance, formal, hop

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of prom in a Sentence


Are you going to the prom? he resolved to ask her to the school prom at the first opportunity

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Here’s a quiz: High-school prom is (a) a place for frustrated teens in formal wear to rub up against each other to the dulcet tones of Pitbull, and under the watchful gaze of exhausted teachers, or (b) a place for wild animals? Madeleine Aggeler, The Cut, "This Florida High-School Prom Included a … Caged Tiger?," 14 May 2018 The prom will be both romantic and glamorous while paying tribute to the students who lost their lives Feb. 14. Johnny Diaz,, "Despite photo, Parkland students David Hogg and Cameron Kasky apparently aren't going to prom together," 24 Apr. 2018 Want to make sure your school's prom is featured on Nikki Delamotte,, "Submit your school's prom photos to be featured on," 23 Apr. 2018 Related stories from Sacramento Bee Kylie Jenner showed up at Rio Americano’s prom. Jordan Cutler-tietjen, sacbee, "Drag shows, rainbows and acceptance at Sacramento’s 10th annual prom for LGBTQ youth," 5 July 2018 National Geographic shows the last prom at a city high school before the longstanding institution closes its doors for good. Oona Goodin-smith,, "Why Philly is a bad place to get bedbugs, ringing in the Fourth with protests and Pitbull | Morning Newsletter," 5 July 2018 Kirby’s prom is supposed to narrow the gap between life inside and out. Joy Resmovits,, "What prom looks like in juvenile detention: contraband hairpins have to be returned at the end of the night," 21 June 2018 In the weeks following prom, the momentum behind his music continued to build. Carina Chocano, Vogue, "Khalid Talks High School Prom, Going Platinum, and Getting A New Puppy," 20 June 2018 This would allow flexibility when facing challenges of weather, graduation, testing and prom. Brian Gosset, star-telegram, "Ejection penalties one topic discussed at UIL Legislative Council meeting," 14 June 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of prom


1879, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for prom


short for promenade

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about prom

Statistics for prom

Last Updated

12 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for prom

The first known use of prom was in 1879

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for prom



English Language Learners Definition of prom

: a formal dance for high school students usually at the end of the school year


\ˈpräm \

Kids Definition of prom

: a usually formal dance given by a high school or college class

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on prom

What made you want to look up prom? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


lying above or upon

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Roman Mythology Quiz

  • the-triumph-of-venus-by-alessandro-magnasco
  • Boreal comes from the name of the ancient Greek god of which wind?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!