tow·​er·​ing | \ ˈtau̇(-ə)r-iŋ How to pronounce towering (audio) \

Definition of towering

1 : impressively high or great : imposing towering pines
2 : reaching a high point of intensity : overwhelming a towering rage
3 : going beyond proper bounds : excessive towering ambitions

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Other Words from towering

toweringly adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for towering


altitudinous, high, lofty, tall


low, low-lying, short, squat

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Examples of towering in a Sentence

He flew into a towering rage. the towering mountain peaks of the Rockies

Recent Examples on the Web

At a recent casting for the Nuestra Belleza Venezuela contest, a pack of teens and 20-something women donned towering heels and coated their lips in glossy pink hues before strutting in front of judges. Washington Post, "In embattled Venezuela, beauty offers ladder out of poverty," 6 July 2018 The band vamped while Beyonce initially appeared reluctant to descend via the ladder -- understandable considering her towering heels -- but eventually capitulated. Variety,, "Beyonce stranded by flying stage malfunction," 2 July 2018 The government opened that debate Wednesday by announcing an international competition to design a replacement for the towering spire that collapsed Monday when a fire swept across the cathedral’s centuries-old roof. Matthew Dalton, WSJ, "France Debates a Modern Spire for Notre Dame," 17 Apr. 2019 Once a towering figure in politics and literally beyond the law, Najib has fallen from grace swiftly since his historic electoral loss last May 9, which led to the first change of government since Malaysia’s independence from Britain in 1957. Eileen Ng, The Seattle Times, "Malaysian ex-PM Najib combative ahead of 1MDB graft trial," 11 Feb. 2019 The smoked mozzarella on his signature Tamaki pie is a revelation, but no order is complete without a marinara pizza, because any cheese is ultimately a distraction from the towering achievement of his crust. Stan Parish, WSJ, "‘Go Beyond Sushi’: Tokyo’s Culinary Gems," 19 June 2018 Bamiyan is one of the most beautiful provinces of Afghanistan, covered with towering mountains and lush green fields. Suleiman Amanzad, WSJ, "Afghanistan’s Post-9/11 Generation," 6 Mar. 2019 Lincoln Kirstein’s Modern The writer, philanthropist, and art connoisseur Lincoln Kirstein was a towering New York figure, best known for co-founding the Ballet Society (later to be known as the New York City Ballet) with George Balanchine in 1946. Marley Marius, Vogue, "From Sally Mann to Jacopo Tintoretto, 7 Art Exhibitions You Won't Want to Miss This Spring," 1 Mar. 2019 The towering barriers don’t stop Juarez from almost seeming like another neighborhood in El Paso. Will Weissert, The Seattle Times, "El Paso bristles at Trump’s claim that wall made city safe," 11 Feb. 2019

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

1592, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for towering

Last Updated

6 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for towering

The first known use of towering was in 1592

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More Definitions for towering



English Language Learners Definition of towering

: very tall
: very powerful or intense
: very great or impressive


tow·​er·​ing | \ ˈtau̇-ər-iŋ How to pronounce towering (audio) \

Kids Definition of towering

1 : rising high : tall Another match … illuminated a massive, towering, teetering pile of … soup bowls.— Kate DiCamillo, The Tale of Despereaux
2 : very powerful or intense a towering rage
3 : going beyond proper bounds towering ambition

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More from Merriam-Webster on towering

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for towering

Spanish Central: Translation of towering

Nglish: Translation of towering for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of towering for Arabic Speakers

Comments on towering

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


something valued as if it were money

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