tsu·na·mi | \(t)su̇-ˈnä-mē \
plural tsunamis also tsunami

Definition of tsunami 

: a great sea wave produced especially by submarine earth movement or volcanic eruption : tidal wave

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Other Words from tsunami

tsunamic \(t)su̇-ˈnä-mik \ adjective

Examples of tsunami in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

The tsunami arrival scene is one of the most riveting, tense and transporting scenes in recent film history. Todd Stewart, OrlandoSentinel.com, "'Twister' turns 22 years old: My top 22 natural disaster films," 10 May 2018 Yet folks on the front lines of the Oregon's earthquake and tsunami preparedness recommend a few strategies that are free and worthy of tackling today. Molly Harbarger, OregonLive.com, "Oregon Lottery results: The luck of the Irish is worth $1 million for St. Patrick's Day raffle," 18 Mar. 2018 Tuesday’s tsunami was unleashed by a 1:32 a.m. quake off the southern coast of Alaska, near Kodiak Island. Kurtis Alexander, San Francisco Chronicle, "Behind the tsunami scare: It’s not easy to tell when a big wave is coming," 23 Jan. 2018 That's the current situation in Green Township, where a tsunami of sit-down and fast-food restaurants has descended on the community. Mallorie Sullivan, Cincinnati.com, "3 headlines: Cincinnati makes Kesha cry, Big Red Machine and lots of new food," 13 July 2018 In the third inning of Dylan Covey’s start against the Reds on Tuesday, one inning before his day devolved into a six-run tsunami, the White Sox right-hander threw a pitch that went wide and hit the dirt. Phil Thompson, chicagotribune.com, "Get a grip? White Sox pitchers struggle in hot, humid conditions," 5 July 2018 The utility had kept mum on its decision on Fukushima No. 2, which has been offline since the tsunami, and its restart was thought to be a difficult proposition because of local protests. Mari Yamaguchi, BostonGlobe.com, "Japanese utility eyes scrapping 2nd Fukushima nuclear plant," 14 June 2018 Hamaguchi adheres faithfully to the novel's decade-spanning first-person female narrative, adding just a minor subplot (with Shibasaki's permission) relating to the 2011 earthquake and tsunami, which occurred after the book was published. Stephen Dalton, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Asako I & II' ('Netemo sametemo'): Film Review | Cannes 2018," 14 May 2018 More than 20,000 people died or went missing in the tsunami that followed, with hundreds of thousands rendered homeless. Allen Pierleoni, sacbee, "William T. Vollmann has a new book and it should scare the hell out of you | The Sacramento Bee," 8 Apr. 2018

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

1896, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for tsunami

Japanese, from tsu harbor + nami wave

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Statistics for tsunami

Last Updated

5 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for tsunami

The first known use of tsunami was in 1896

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More Definitions for tsunami



English Language Learners Definition of tsunami

: a very high, large wave in the ocean that is usually caused by an earthquake under the sea and that can cause great destruction when it reaches land


tsu·na·mi | \su̇-ˈnä-mē \

Kids Definition of tsunami

: a large sea wave produced especially by an earthquake or volcanic eruption under the sea : tidal wave

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Comments on tsunami

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one that holds something together

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