\ ˈsī How to pronounce sigh (audio) \
sighed; sighing; sighs

Definition of sigh

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to take a deep audible breath (as in weariness or relief)
2 : to make a sound like sighing wind sighing in the branches
3 : grieve, yearn sighing for days gone by

transitive verb

1 : to express by sighs
2 archaic : to utter sighs over : mourn



Definition of sigh (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an often involuntary act of sighing especially when expressing an emotion or feeling (such as weariness or relief)
2 : the sound of gently moving or escaping air sighs of the summer breeze

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Other Words from sigh


sigher \ ˈsī(-​ə)r How to pronounce sigher (audio) \ noun

Synonyms for sigh

Synonyms: Verb

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Examples of sigh in a Sentence

Verb He sighed with relief when he saw that he passed the test. The wind sighed through the trees. “I may never see my old home again,” she sighed.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Jackson sighed when he was asked to relive that game Wednesday. Jonas Shaffer,, "Why are the Ravens’ Lamar Jackson and Texans’ Deshaun Watson MVP candidates? They still play like like they’re in college.," 15 Nov. 2019 Immediately, the town sighed a huge sigh of relief. Shady Grove Oliver, Anchorage Daily News, "Utqiagvik finally celebrates first successful bowhead hunt of season," 21 Nov. 2019 South Florida’s palm trees are postcard promises of sighing sea breezes and sandy beaches, but the icon of the tropics may be an impractical adornment in an era of climate change. Kimberly Miller,, "Oaks instead of palm trees? Florida’s iconic palms don’t cut it with climate change," 14 Nov. 2019 In response to the news, Thorne posted an Instagram Story of herself heavily sighing and rolling her eyes. Cydney Henderson, USA TODAY, "Bella Thorne shares steamy picture with ex Tana Mongeau after the YouTuber gets engaged," 19 June 2019 Another friend looked at the screen in his hand and sighed, deeply. Roy S. Johnson |, al, "Johnson: Our hurt for Kamille 'Cupcake’ McKinney demands more from this Classic, from all of us," 23 Oct. 2019 That was the difference,’’ sighed Del Norte coach Leigh Cole. Pomerado News, "Bye week gives Nighthawks chance to regroup," 25 Sep. 2019 Phillips and his teammates could sigh in relief inside their locker room. Matt Goul, cleveland, "No. 6 Euclid holds off No. 12 Medina, 43-35, to remain unbeaten," 21 Sep. 2019 Ramirez muttered and sighed as the teens, with their baby faces and coltish bodies, bumbled a run-through. Diana Marcum, Los Angeles Times, "Gay shopkeeper stands his ground in a Central Valley town, carving out space for others," 20 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Louisville breathed a sigh of relief from escaping with a 62-58 win over Syracuse, Elizabeth Balogun was thinking too much. David J. Kim, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville women's basketball escapes first ACC play with a win over Syracuse," 29 Dec. 2019 This likely made plenty of Mustang enthusiasts breathe a sigh of relief—though of course there are plenty, as well, who will take issue with it for their own reasons. Eric Adams, Popular Mechanics, "8 Things You Need to Know About Ford's Electric Mustang Mach-E," 19 Nov. 2019 The Longhorns took a collective sigh of relief when Cameron Dicker hit a 33-yard field goal as time expired to lift Texas over Kansas 50-48 on Saturday night. Mark Heim |, al, "Texas survives Les Miles, Kansas with last-second, game-winning field goal," 20 Oct. 2019 Rudolph’s upbeat appearance drew a collective sigh of relief from his teammates. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Iffy path ahead for Steelers with Rudolph’s status uncertain," 7 Oct. 2019 The Pac-12 got a huge sigh of relief when Oregon finally scored a touchdown late in the third quarter and held on for a 17-7 win. oregonlive, "What they’re saying nationally, in Berkeley after Oregon Ducks rally past Cal," 6 Oct. 2019 The morning after an explosion rocked a Columbia office complex and shopping center, authorities shared more details about the blast and breathed a collective sigh of relief that no one was injured. Lillian Reed,, "Columbia explosion aftermath: Destruction of some businesses leaves owners devastated," 26 Aug. 2019 Fans of The Spanish Princess can breath a collective sigh of relief. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Starz Will Expand The Spanish Princess With Eight New Episodes," 9 June 2019 Meanwhile the president’s aides breathed a collective sigh of relief upon reading the description of Mueller’s findings. Jonathan Lemire, The Seattle Times, "Trump claims vindication in Mueller report, goes on attack," 25 Mar. 2019

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for sigh


Middle English sihen, alteration of sichen, from Old English sīcan; akin to Middle Dutch versiken to sigh

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Time Traveler for sigh

Time Traveler

The first known use of sigh was in the 13th century

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Statistics for sigh

Last Updated

29 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Sigh.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 26 January 2020.

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More Definitions for sigh


How to pronounce sigh (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of sigh

: to take in and let out a long, loud breath in a way that shows you are bored, disappointed, relieved, etc.
literary : to make a sound like sighing
: to say (something) with a sigh


\ ˈsī How to pronounce sigh (audio) \
sighed; sighing

Kids Definition of sigh

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to take or let out a long loud breath often as an expression of sadness or weariness
2 : to make a sound like sighing Wind was sighing in the branches.
3 : to say with a sigh “Oh, dear,” she sighed.



Kids Definition of sigh (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act or a sound of taking or letting out a long loud breath She finished with a sigh of relief.

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More from Merriam-Webster on sigh

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for sigh

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with sigh

Spanish Central: Translation of sigh

Nglish: Translation of sigh for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of sigh for Arabic Speakers

Comments on sigh

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


to express in a more acceptable way

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