sur·pris·ing | \ sər-ˈprī-ziŋ , sə- \

Definition of surprising 

: of a nature that excites surprise

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Examples of surprising in a Sentence

It's not surprising that he doesn't want to go. The changes to the campus were surprising. He shows a surprising lack of concern for others. A surprising number of people were laid off at the factory.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Microsoft is giving its Notepad app for Windows a surprising amount of new features. Tom Warren, The Verge, "Microsoft is updating the Windows Notepad app for the first time in years," 12 July 2018 As the English players stepped up one after another, the absence of Jamie Vardy seemed surprising, with the striker possessing a fantastic penalty record, scoring 12 of his 15 penalties since 2011., "The Reason Why Jamie Vardy Did Not Take a Penalty Against Colombia Revealed," 4 July 2018 Anyone familiar with the traditions of the British royal family knows Kate Middleton's absence isn't all that surprising. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Duchess of Cambridge Skipped Today's Royal Ascot for an Understandable Reason," 19 June 2018 Christopher Kuhagen/Now News Group MUSKEGO - In an era when body cameras worn by patrol officers are becoming more common, the idea of equipping a police dog in a similar manner might not seem surprising. Jim Riccioli, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Muskego police implement unique body cam for its K9, thanks to efforts of local group," 18 June 2018 This should not seem surprising since, as Charles Darwin recognized, life is graded on a curve. Robert H. Frank, New York Times, "Would a Single-Payer System Require Painful Sacrifices From Doctors?," 8 June 2018 The Pride boast enough talent to clinch an National Women’s Soccer League playoff spot, but lapses in focus and uncharacteristic miscues led to a surprising 3-1 loss at Houston Wednesday and threatened to derail their season. Iliana Limón Romero, Pro Soccer USA, "Orlando Pride earn 2-1 road win over Utah Royals," 14 July 2018 And one surprising reason is that men seem to enjoy factory work much more than women do. Evan Horowitz,, "Work is getting better, especially for women," 14 July 2018 Here are some of the most probing passages Bernstein ever penned, the work’s melodic progress at once surprising and inevitable. Howard Reich,, "CSO at Ravinia review: Marin Alsop poetically launches Bernstein tribute," 13 July 2018

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

1614, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for surprising

Last Updated

1 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for surprising

The first known use of surprising was in 1614

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More Definitions for surprising



English Language Learners Definition of surprising

: unexpected or unusual : causing surprise


sur·pris·ing | \ sər-ˈprī-ziŋ , sə-ˈprī-ziŋ \

Kids Definition of surprising

: causing astonishment : unexpected Although some things were always the same with Abuelita … others were surprising —Pam Muñoz Ryan, Esperanza Rising

Other words from surprising

surprisingly adverb He is a surprisingly good singer.

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Comments on surprising

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


occurring twice a year or every two years

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