noun, often attributive
\ˈstȯrm \

Definition of storm 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a disturbance of the atmosphere marked by wind and usually by rain, snow, hail, sleet, or thunder and lightning

b : a heavy fall of rain, snow, or hail

c(1) : wind having a speed of 64 to 72 miles (103 to 117 kilometers) per hour

(2) : whole gale — see Beaufort Scale Table

d : a serious disturbance of any element of nature

2 : a disturbed or agitated state storms of emotion : a sudden or violent commotion

3 : a heavy discharge of objects (such as missiles)

4 : a tumultuous outburst a storm of protests

5a : paroxysm sense 2

b : a sudden heavy influx or onset

6 : a violent assault on a defended position

7 storms plural : storm window

by storm

: by or as if by employing a bold swift frontal movement especially with the intent of defeating or winning over quickly took the literary world by storm

up a storm

: in a remarkable or energetic fashion used as an intensifier dancing up a storm


stormed; storming; storms

Definition of storm (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to blow with violence

b : to rain, hail, snow, or sleet vigorously

2 : to attack by storm stormed ashore at zero hour

3 : to be in or to exhibit a violent passion : rage storming at the unusual delay

4 : to rush about or move impetuously, violently, or angrily the mob stormed through the streets

transitive verb

: to attack, take, or win over by storm storm a fort

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Synonyms for storm

Synonyms: Noun

squall, tempest

Synonyms: Verb

bristle, fume, rage

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Choose the Right Synonym for storm


attack, assail, assault, bombard, storm mean to make an onslaught upon. attack implies taking the initiative in a struggle. plan to attack the town at dawn assail implies attempting to break down resistance by repeated blows or shots. assailed the enemy with artillery fire assault suggests a direct attempt to overpower by suddenness and violence of onslaught. Commandos assaulted the building from all sides. bombard applies to attacking with bombs or shells. bombarded the city nightly storm implies attempting to break into a defended position. preparing to storm the fortress

Examples of storm in a Sentence


The sky got dark and it looked like a storm was coming. a winter storm bringing about six inches of snow


The mob stormed through the streets. She yelled at us and stormed off. He stormed out of the room. She stormed into the office.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Chalk it up to this year’s many stress-inducing events (politically, environmentally, and otherwise) but pajamas (the comfort food of clothing) have taken 2018 by storm. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "The 36 Best Pajamas to Buy for Absolutely Everyone on Your Holiday Gift List," 13 Nov. 2018 The United Nations said 33 people have been injured in al-Mahra and that a total of 2,000 families have been affected by the storm. Ahmed Al-haj, The Seattle Times, "Tropical storm lashes eastern Yemen, injures dozens," 16 Oct. 2018 And just like that, dreams of a Cardi-as-Ariel crossover took the internet by storm. Rachel Nussbaum, Glamour, "Behold Cardi B Using a Dinglehopper to Brush Her Hair," 16 Oct. 2018 Other parts of Georgia also were hit hard by the storm. Kate Brumback, Fox News, "Georgia girl, 11, dies as Michael hurls debris through roof," 12 Oct. 2018 The report has taken the cybersecurity world by storm, and experts are picking apart both sides of the story. Makena Kelly, The Verge, "Chinese spies reportedly inserted chips into servers belonging to Apple, Amazon," 4 Oct. 2018 Fans of the original series, which took the world by storm in the 1970s, will likely point out that there was originally just one Bosley, the enigmatic head of the show’s fictional detective agency. Dan Barna, Teen Vogue, "Noah Centineo Will Star in the "Charlie's Angels" Reboot," 2 Oct. 2018 The environmental health threats of the flooding are especially acute in North Carolina, which has a massive livestock sector concentrated in the eastern part of the state, the same region hardest hit by the storm. Umair Irfan, Vox, "Florence dropped so much rain that hog waste is spilling out of lagoons," 18 Sep. 2018 Drink: Soif Bar à Vin Sommelier Véronique Rivest is world-famous, let alone Canada famous, and this small space is where she's settled after taking the wine world by storm. Isa Tousignant, Condé Nast Traveler, "3 Best Day Trips From Montreal," 17 Aug. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The man had poured flammable liquid over his hostage and was attempting to set her on fire when police stormed the pharmacy. Andrea Thomas, WSJ, "German Police Investigate Hostage-Taking as Possible Terror Attack," 16 Oct. 2018 The next deaths came a few months later, on Oct. 22, when a crew stormed a home on Libby Lane in Clayton County. Joshua Sharpe, ajc, "Inside the alleged DeKalb gang killing spree that took five lives," 8 June 2018 Medieval villagers storm a suspected witch's cottage. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "The first trailer for Good Omens will make you long for the end of times," 6 Oct. 2018 The truck storms the embankment, throws its front tires over the top . . Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "The Outrageously Fun, Michigan-Made 4x4 You've Never Heard Of," 10 Aug. 2018 Hamilton stormed back with three runs in the third and fourth before tying the game with a four-run sixth. Curt Hogg, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Oak Creek, Sussex Hamilton grab share of Greater Metro Conference baseball title," 2 July 2018 My father, enraged by the noise, stormed out of his room and pulled us apart. Zito Madu, GQ, "How to Forgive Your Father," 26 June 2018 Imagine Stewart gesturing wildly during the beautiful rant that followed, then mock-storming off stage ... Peter Hartlaub, San Francisco Chronicle, "Jon Stewart dropped by S.F., but it felt like he’s been here the whole time," 6 June 2018 Elsewhere in the Mesa Hub, Dolores and her supporters have stormed in. Sandra Upson, WIRED, "Westworld Recap, Season 2 Episode 7: Decoding Da Vinci," 4 June 2018

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1a

History and Etymology for storm


Middle English, from Old English; akin to Old High German sturm storm, Old English styrian to stir

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Statistics for storm

Last Updated

9 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for storm

The first known use of storm was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for storm



English Language Learners Definition of storm

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an occurrence of bad weather in which there is a lot of rain, snow, etc., and often strong winds

: a sudden occurrence of something in large amounts

: a situation in which many people are angry, upset, etc.



English Language Learners Definition of storm (Entry 2 of 2)

—used with it to say that a storm (sense 1) is happening

: to attack (something) suddenly with a lot of force or with a large number of people

: to go quickly and in an angry, loud way


\ˈstȯrm \

Kids Definition of storm

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a heavy fall of rain, snow, or sleet often with strong winds

2 : a serious disturbance of any element of nature a dust storm

3 : a strong outburst a storm of protest

4 : a violent attack on a defended position The army took the fort by storm.


stormed; storming

Kids Definition of storm (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to blow hard and rain, snow, or sleet heavily

2 : to make a sudden mass attack against Soldiers stormed the fort.

3 : to feel or express angry feelings : rage He stormed at the long delay.

4 : to rush about violently or angrily I stormed out of Mandy's room and rushed to the library …— Gail Carson Levine, Ella Enchanted


\ˈstȯ(ə)rm \

Medical Definition of storm 

: a crisis or sudden increase in the symptoms of a disease — see thyroid storm

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More from Merriam-Webster on storm

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with storm

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for storm

Spanish Central: Translation of storm

Nglish: Translation of storm for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of storm for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about storm

Comments on storm

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


a nest or breeding place

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