: a large number or amount
a spate of books on gardening
: a sudden or strong outburst : rush
a spate of anger

Examples of spate in a Sentence

A spate of books on the subject have come out recently. There was a spate of corporate mergers in the 1980s.
Recent Examples on the Web Then came a torrent of rain over northeastern Libya on Monday, leaving 5,300 dead and thousands still missing after perhaps the most ferocious of a spate of recent floods that have inundated communities in countries from Japan to Greece and the United States. Theodora Yu, Washington Post, 14 Sep. 2023 Other California counties also have seen a spate of recent in-custody deaths. Jeff McDonald, San Diego Union-Tribune, 14 Sep. 2023 Crow-Armstrong is the latest in a spate of position players from Southern California drafted in the first round who have ascended to the big leagues. Steve Henson, Los Angeles Times, 11 Sep. 2023 Masters pointed to a spate of hurricanes since 2017 that have intensified rapidly. Denise Chow, NBC News, 30 Aug. 2023 In addition to a spate of new bars and brasseries, the glamorous Casa Cipriani looms just a few minutes drive down South Street. Ian Malone, Vogue, 28 Aug. 2023 Also, 43-year old Venus Williams will open against Paula Badosa, who was seeded No. 4 last year but comes in unseeded after a spate of injuries. Dan Wolken, USA TODAY, 24 Aug. 2023 There have been a spate of coyote attacks recently in Eastern Massachusetts, the Globe has reported. Adam Sennott,, 1 Sep. 2023 But the spate of incidents, including a fall in March and two sudden bouts of momentary paralysis in public, has turned attention to who might follow him. Carl Hulse, New York Times, 31 Aug. 2023 See More

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

Word History


Middle English

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of spate was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near spate

Cite this Entry

“Spate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Sep. 2023.

Kids Definition


: a sudden flood or rush

More from Merriam-Webster on spate

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