ter·​rif·​ic | \ tə-ˈri-fik How to pronounce terrific (audio) \

Definition of terrific

1 : unusually fine : magnificent terrific weather
2 : extraordinary terrific speed
3a : exciting or fit to excite fear or awe a terrific thunderstorm
b : very bad : frightful

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Other Words from terrific

terrifically \ tə-​ˈri-​fi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce terrific (audio) \ adverb

Examples of terrific in a Sentence

She's given me some terrific ideas. Your test scores were terrific. They did a terrific job painting the house. I had a terrific time. I've recovered completely. In fact, I feel terrific. We were hit by a terrific snowstorm last week.
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Recent Examples on the Web For Nolan Lazor, having the opportunity to connect Foles with some of his new teammates provided a terrific bonding experience. Dan Wiederer, chicagotribune.com, "Nick Foles’ transition to the Chicago Bears began with a July throwing session with Vernon Hills High School players: ‘My dad still doesn’t believe me that I threw with Nick’," 2 Oct. 2020 After a slow start, Deshaun Watson has been terrific. Los Angeles Times, "NFL Week 17 picks: Washington wins and makes playoffs; Rams top Cardinals," 1 Jan. 2021 Receivers Brady Boyd, a Minnesota signee, and junior Landon Samson were terrific. Joseph Hoyt, Dallas News, "Previews and predictions for every regional final playoff game for Dallas-area 6A and 5A schools," 29 Dec. 2020 The characters are well-developed, the cast is terrific, and the pacing is relentless, chock-full of unexpected twists and WTF moments. Ars Staff, Ars Technica, "TV Technica 2020: Our favorite shows and binges in a year of living distantly," 26 Dec. 2020 The transition from paper menus to ones accessed via QR codes is terrific. Kate Krader, Bloomberg.com, "Restaurant Industry Changes I Want to Keep After the Pandemic," 18 Dec. 2020 In certain culinary circles (really good ones, where the cake is always terrific), Melissa Weller’s name is uttered only in tones of the greatest reverence. Helen Rosner, The New Yorker, "The Best Cookbooks of 2020," 15 Dec. 2020 Chris Bassitt was terrific throughout (5-2, 2.29 ERA) and has taken on the leadership role on the staff. SFChronicle.com, "A’s pitching coach Scott Emerson sees staff as a positive, even in a time of uncertainty," 14 Dec. 2020 Back at work, she is eyed by her co-workers, the wonderfully fey Shane (Griffin Matthews) and the middle-aged worrier Megan (the terrific Rosie Perez). Doreen St. Félix, The New Yorker, "A Hot Mess Caught in a Caper in “The Flight Attendant”," 28 Dec. 2020

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

1667, in the meaning defined at sense 3b

History and Etymology for terrific

Latin terrificus, from terrēre to frighten

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Time Traveler for terrific

Time Traveler

The first known use of terrific was in 1667

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Statistics for terrific

Last Updated

18 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Terrific.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/terrific. Accessed 22 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for terrific


How to pronounce terrific (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of terrific

informal : extremely good
: causing a feeling of surprise or wonder


ter·​rif·​ic | \ tə-ˈri-fik How to pronounce terrific (audio) \

Kids Definition of terrific

1 : excellent That's a terrific idea.
2 : very unusual : extraordinary The car was going at terrific speed.
3 : causing terror : terrible The storm caused terrific damage.

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Comments on terrific

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