tes·​tos·​ter·​one te-ˈstä-stə-ˌrōn How to pronounce testosterone (audio)
: a hormone that is a hydroxy steroid ketone C19H28O2 produced especially by the testes or made synthetically and that is responsible for inducing and maintaining male secondary sex characters
: qualities (such as brawn and aggressiveness) usually associated with males : manliness

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web That can be a problem, since the stress-hormone can actually block the effects of testosterone, a study published in Hormones and Behavior found. Alisa Hrustic, Men's Health, 28 Apr. 2023 On Tuesday, for example, Fox News host Laura Ingraham suggested that medications for mental illness or hormones like testosterone led to the suspect’s actions, even though police have not released any information about medication the suspect may have been taking. Jo Yurcaba, NBC News, 30 Mar. 2023 Previous rules required transgender women to stay below a maximum blood testosterone level. Harold Maass, The Week, 24 Mar. 2023 Early research shows that testosterone therapy might increase cholesterol levels. Nisarg Bakshi, ABC News, 19 Mar. 2023 Much of the discussion around 2021′s restricting on high school trans athletes revolved around Euless wrestler Mack Beggs, a transgender man, and whether taking testosterone would give him an unfair advantage against female competitors. Lauren Mcgaughy, Dallas News, 13 Mar. 2023 Zinc can encourage testosterone production, which may improve libido and help women's ovaries stay healthy. Kathleen Felton, Health, 9 Mar. 2023 That might have been adolescence or testosterone or whatever the f*ck was running through my body at the time. Carolyn Twersky, Seventeen, 7 Mar. 2023 Activists have tried to get around this by claiming that testosterone suppressants somehow reverse the advantages bestowed by male puberty. Madeleine Kearns, National Review, 2 Mar. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'testosterone.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


borrowed from German Testosteron, from Latin testēs testes + German -o- -o- + -steron -sterone

Note: The name was introduced by the Hungarian pharmacologists Karoly Gyula David (1905-45) and János Freud (1901-48), the Dutch endocrinologist Elisabeth Dingemanse (1886-1952), and the German-born Dutch physician and pharmacologist Ernst Laqueur (1880-1947) (all affiliated with the Pharmaco-Therapeutic Laboratory of the University of Amsterdam) in "Über krystallinisches männliches Hormon aus Hoden (Testosteron), wirksamer als aus Harn oder aus Cholesterin bereitetes Androsteron," Zeitschrift für physiologische Chemie, Band 233 (1935), pp. 281-83.

First Known Use

1935, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of testosterone was in 1935

Dictionary Entries Near testosterone

Cite this Entry

“Testosterone.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/testosterone. Accessed 10 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


tes·​tos·​ter·​one te-ˈstäs-tə-ˌrōn How to pronounce testosterone (audio)
: a male hormone produced by the testes that causes the development of the male reproductive system and secondary sex characteristics

Medical Definition


tes·​tos·​ter·​one te-ˈstäs-tə-ˌrōn How to pronounce testosterone (audio)
: a male hormone that is a crystalline hydroxy steroid ketone C19H28O2 produced primarily by the testes or made synthetically and that is the main androgen responsible for inducing and maintaining male secondary sex characteristics see androgel, axiron

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