tem·​pes·​tu·​ous | \ tem-ˈpes-chə-wəs How to pronounce tempestuous (audio) , -ˈpesh- \

Definition of tempestuous

: of, relating to, or resembling a tempest : turbulent, stormy tempestuous weather a tempestuous relationship

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Other Words from tempestuous

tempestuously adverb
tempestuousness noun

Did You Know?

Time is sometimes marked in seasons, and seasons are associated with the weather. This explains how "tempus," the Latin word for "time" could have given rise to an English adjective for things turbulent and stormy. "Tempus" is the root behind Old Latin tempestus, meaning "season," and Late Latin tempestuosus, the direct ancestor of "tempestuous." As you might expect, "tempus" is also the root of the noun "tempest"; it probably played a role in the history of "temper" as well, but that connection isn't definite.

Examples of tempestuous in a Sentence

order was restored to the court after the judge put a stop to the defendant's tempestuous outburst in terms of social change, the 1960s are generally considered the most tempestuous decade in recent American history
Recent Examples on the Web But Trudeau and Trump have had a tempestuous relationship. David M. Shribman, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Opinion: Justin Trudeau's refusal to travel to the U.S. to meet Trump was a pointed rebuke," 8 July 2020 Thomas Penn puts an irresistible personal face on the legendary Wars of the Roses between the houses of York and Lancaster by focusing on the tempestuous brothers at the heart of the conflict. Monitor Reviewers, The Christian Science Monitor, "The 10 best books of June bring hope and insight," 22 June 2020 Some of you grew up in the tempestuous ’60s and were shaped by them. Kevin Sherrington, Dallas News, "College athletes are speaking out on troublesome campus traditions. It’s time to listen.," 14 June 2020 And unlike tempestuous Italian exotica, its spacious body and four-wheel drive provide everyday performance. Arthur St. Antoine, Car and Driver, "Tested: 1992 GMC Typhoon," 19 May 2020 In this environment, many digital-token enthusiasts tempered their calls that cryptocurrencies can act as a haven in tempestuous times. Vildana Hajric, Bloomberg.com, "Bitcoin’s March Plunge Is Worst Since the Crypto Bubble Burst," 12 May 2020 This often put him in conflict with Karajan, who had a tempestuous relationship with the orchestra anyway. BostonGlobe.com, "Hellmut Stern, 91; violinist returned to Germany after fleeing," 3 Apr. 2020 Bridgehampton was open fields and flinty farmers, living in wooden homes weathered by the tempestuous sea. Paul Daugherty, Cincinnati.com, "Paul Daugherty: Two sons of New England put Reds in a big hole in 1975 World Series," 30 Mar. 2020 Thank you to our residents, businesses, non-profits, places of worship, and civic partners for making Dayton a safer place with your faithful resolve to weather these tempestuous times. Theo Melancon, City Manager, Houston Chronicle, "Letter to the Editor: City manager promoting public health to save lives," 28 Mar. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for tempestuous

Middle English tempestuous, Latinization of tempestous, borrowed from Anglo-French, re-formation of Late Latin tempestuōsus, from tempestu-, probably extracted from Latin tempestūt-, tempestūs, archaic variant of tempestāt-, tempestās "stretch of time, season, weather, tempest entry 1" + -ōsus -ous

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Time Traveler for tempestuous

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The first known use of tempestuous was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

13 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Tempestuous.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tempestuous. Accessed 8 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for tempestuous


How to pronounce tempestuous (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of tempestuous

literary : affected by a tempest
: full of strong emotions (such as anger or excitement)


tem·​pes·​tu·​ous | \ tem-ˈpes-chə-wəs How to pronounce tempestuous (audio) \

Kids Definition of tempestuous

: very stormy

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