tan·trum | \ ˈtan-trəm \

Definition of tantrum 

: a fit of bad temper

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Examples of tantrum in a Sentence

had a tantrum when he found his little sister using his model paints

Recent Examples on the Web

American drug companies threw a tantrum — and the Clinton administration dutifully did the same. Eric Levitz, Daily Intelligencer, "It’s Normal for the U.S. to Put Corporate Profits Above Babies’ Health," 10 July 2018 Rays outfielder Carlos Gomez threw a huge tantrum after striking out during Tampa Bay’s 3-0 loss to the Marlins on July 4. Alysha Tsuji, For The Win, "Carlos Gomez says sorry to Gatorade cooler after destroying 2 in mid-game tantrum," 6 July 2018 An inflatable blimp of President Donald Trump wearing a diaper, clutching a cell phone and throwing a temper tantrum has been given approval to fly near Britain's Parliament in London during Trump's visit to the United Kingdom next week. Kim Hjelmgaard, USA TODAY, "Diaper-clad 'Trump Baby' blimp to fly over London during president's visit," 5 July 2018 President Trump is scheduled to visit London next week, and a giant balloon depicting him as a baby throwing a tantrum will reportedly greet him near the UK Parliament. De Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, "London Mayor Approves Giant Baby Balloon to Greet President Trump's UK Visit," 5 July 2018 Or maybe Zalie will throw a tantrum, as two-year-olds are wont to do, and her parents will need to swoop in. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Who Will Wrangle All the Bridesmaids and Page Boys at the Royal Wedding," 17 May 2018 The 33-year-old trophy magnet has evidently calmed from his alleged tax-evasion-lack-of-support tantrum last summer and remains as vital as ever to Real Madrid's success. Avi Creditor, SI.com, "Barcelona, Real Madrid Brace for Stake-Less Clasico Rife With Enticing Elements," 4 May 2018 Instead of using corporal punishment, child development experts seem to agree that the best way to deal with a kid in the throes of a temper tantrum is to remain firm while also expressing compassion. Jackie Frere, Redbook, "Kelly Clarkson Opens Up About Her Decision to Spank Her Two Kids," 9 Jan. 2018 Evans posted a photo online of his little girl after dragging her out of the restaurant in the midst of a torrential tantrum. Sarah Schreiber, Good Housekeeping, "Dad Posts Photo of Child's Restaurant Tantrum to Help Irritated Diners Understand," 9 Mar. 2017

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

1714, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for tantrum

origin unknown

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Learn More about tantrum

Dictionary Entries near tantrum


tant pis




tan vat


Phrases Related to tantrum

have/throw/pitch a tantrum

Statistics for tantrum

Last Updated

10 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for tantrum

The first known use of tantrum was in 1714

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More Definitions for tantrum



English Language Learners Definition of tantrum

: an uncontrolled expression of childish anger : an angry outburst by a child or by someone who is behaving like a child


tan·trum | \ ˈtan-trəm \

Kids Definition of tantrum

: an outburst of bad temper


tan·trum | \ ˈtan-trəm \

Medical Definition of tantrum 

: a fit of bad temper

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Comments on tantrum

What made you want to look up tantrum? 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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