sneeze

1 of 2

verb

sneezed; sneezing

intransitive verb

: to make a sudden violent spasmodic audible expiration of breath through the nose and mouth especially as a reflex act
sneezer noun

sneeze

2 of 2

noun

: an act or instance of sneezing
Phrases
sneeze at
informal : to make light of
always used in negative statements to indicate something that is important or deserves attention
… a red ribbon for second place is not to be sneezed at or scorned.Richard Peck
Perquisites and severance pay are nothing to sneeze at [=are significant]

Examples of sneeze in a Sentence

Verb She was constantly sneezing and coughing.
Recent Examples on the Web
Verb
When a person with TB disease coughs, sneezes, speaks or sings, bacteria can spread through the air and a non-infected patient can breathe in the bacteria. Mary Kekatos, ABC News, 8 May 2024 As seasonal allergies return, Wisconsinites might be suffering with runny nose, sneezing and itchy eyes. Alex Groth, Journal Sentinel, 7 May 2024 These can range from swelling and itching at the injection site (usually the arm) to sneezing and a runny nose to anaphylactic shock in rare cases. Amanda MacMillan, Health, 7 May 2024 Grasses in the summertime also can trigger coughing and sneezing. Michaela Mulligan, Miami Herald, 1 May 2024 Runny Nose and Sneezing Antihistamines may provide temporary relief from a runny nose and sneezing. Amanda Gardner, Health, 30 Mar. 2024 But allergy sufferers don’t have to just sneeze and bear it, Dr. Rosenthal advises. Cara Lynn Shultz, Peoplemag, 13 Mar. 2024 As temperatures in Kentucky slowly rise, people can expect more sneezing, itchiness and congestion for themselves or those around them. Ray Padilla, The Courier-Journal, 29 Feb. 2024 But for those dealing with seasonal allergies, spring is marked by itchy eyes and throats, runny noses and lots of sneezing. USA TODAY, 4 Apr. 2024
Noun
But for those who sneeze, wheeze, and water as the world begins to bloom, pollen is a less-than-welcome companion to spring. Gabriela Riccardi, Quartz, 8 May 2024 While the winds were nothing to sneeze at, the gusts are common in late spring. Nathan Solis, Los Angeles Times, 6 May 2024 Anderson says that people wouldn’t cough or sneeze directly onto friends or family members. Emilie Le Beau Lucchesi, Discover Magazine, 30 Apr. 2024 Measles is a highly contagious disease that can be spread from person-to-person through the air and can stay in the air for two hours after a sick person coughs or sneezes. Claire Reid, Journal Sentinel, 26 Apr. 2024 Tuberculosis is caused by bacteria that usually attack the lungs, and is spread through the air when an infectious person coughs or sneezes. Mike Stobbe, The Denver Post, 30 Mar. 2024 Scientists believe leprosy can spread by inhaling infected respiratory droplets that are released when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how flu and COVID spread. Michelle Marchante, Miami Herald, 28 Mar. 2024 Measles spreads through the air through coughs and sneezes. Haadiza Ogwude, The Enquirer, 15 Mar. 2024 The exterior decks are nothing to sneeze at, either. Rachel Cormack, Robb Report, 12 Dec. 2023

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

Word History

Etymology

Verb

Middle English snesen, alteration of fnesen, from Old English fnēosan; akin to Middle High German pfnūsen to snort, sneeze, Greek pnein to breathe

First Known Use

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun

1646, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of sneeze was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near sneeze

Cite this Entry

“Sneeze.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sneeze. Accessed 25 May. 2024.

Kids Definition

sneeze

verb
ˈsnēz
sneezed; sneezing
: to force the breath out through the nose or mouth in a sudden violent noisy action
sneeze noun
sneezer noun

Medical Definition

sneeze

1 of 2 intransitive verb
sneezed; sneezing
: to make a sudden violent spasmodic audible expiration of breath through the nose and mouth especially as a reflex act following irritation of the nasal mucous membrane

sneeze

2 of 2 noun
: an act or instance of sneezing

More from Merriam-Webster on sneeze

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