upset

verb
up·​set | \ (ˌ)əp-ˈset How to pronounce upset (audio) \
upset; upsetting

Definition of upset

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to thicken and shorten (something, such as a heated bar of iron) by hammering on the end : swage
2 : to force out of the usual upright, level, or proper position : overturn
3a : to trouble mentally or emotionally : disturb the poise of the news upset me
b : to throw into disorder
d : to defeat unexpectedly was upset in the primary
4 : to cause a physical disorder in specifically : to make somewhat ill spicy food upsets my stomach

intransitive verb

: to become overturned
upset the apple cart
: to disturb or overturn a natural or stable order

upset

noun
up·​set | \ ˈəp-ˌset How to pronounce upset (audio) \

Definition of upset (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : an act of overturning : overturn
2a(1) : an act of throwing into disorder : derangement
(2) : a state of disorder : confusion
b : an unexpected defeat
3a : a minor physical disorder a stomach upset
b : an emotional disturbance went through a big upset after his father's death
4a : a part of a rod (such as the head on a bolt) that is upset
b : the expansion of a bullet on striking

upset

adjective
up·​set | \ (ˌ)əp-ˈset How to pronounce upset (audio) \

Definition of upset (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : emotionally disturbed or agitated was too upset to speak to him
2 : affected with minor physicial disturbance or disorder an upset stomach

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Other Words from upset

Verb

upsetter noun

Choose the Right Synonym for upset

Verb

discompose, disquiet, disturb, perturb, agitate, upset, fluster mean to destroy capacity for collected thought or decisive action. discompose implies some degree of loss of self-control or self-confidence especially through emotional stress. discomposed by the loss of his beloved wife disquiet suggests loss of sense of security or peace of mind. the disquieting news of factories closing disturb implies interference with one's mental processes caused by worry, perplexity, or interruption. the discrepancy in accounts disturbed me perturb implies deep disturbance of mind and emotions. perturbed by her husband's strange behavior agitate suggests obvious external signs of nervous or emotional excitement. in his agitated state we could see he was unable to work upset implies the disturbance of normal or habitual functioning by disappointment, distress, or grief. the family's constant bickering upsets the youngest child fluster suggests bewildered agitation. his declaration of love completely flustered her

Examples of upset in a Sentence

Verb

That remark you made really upset me. Don't upset yourself over it. It upsets him that he can do nothing to help. A lot of people were upset by the court's decision. It upsets me to think I might never see him again. Spicy food upsets my stomach.

Noun

In a major upset, he took the gold medal. Her victory in the election was a big upset. Spicy foods can cause stomach upset. An emotional upset can affect your physical health. a period of emotional upset

Adjective

I was feeling upset by the whole experience. There's no point in getting all upset about it. I try not to let her make me upset. She was too upset to speak to him. I'm upset that you didn't call. I was so upset with him, I didn't call him for two weeks.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Georgia State has been in the news lately after a stunning Week 1 upset over Tennessee. Jr Radcliffe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "One interesting fact about each of the newcomers to the Green Bay Packers roster in 2019," 5 Sep. 2019 However, some folks who ordered the book online from Amazon have already received their copies, upsetting many indie book sellers. Wired, "Jeremy Renner Just Shut Down His Fan App," 5 Sep. 2019 After that, whenever something happened to upset her, the girl would go to the stone. Louise Erdrich, The New Yorker, "The Stone," 2 Sep. 2019 This is just another example of how con artists try to upset us badly enough to throw us off our game and cause us (out of fear or curiosity or whatever) to click on links or do other unwise things. cleveland.com, "Email scammer claims reader visited porn website, must pay $1,387 to keep it secret: Money Matters," 1 Sep. 2019 But a chance sighting of a small cooler with a blocky shape would change the trajectory of their careers, and upset the entire cooler industry. Louis Mazzante //, Popular Mechanics, "How the Yeti Tundra Became the Coolest Cooler," 1 Sep. 2019 Previous SlideNext Slide This post by its nature will contain potential spoilers for Star Wars Episode IX. Do not read on if that's going to upset you. Jonathan M. Gitlin, Ars Technica, "Disney releases new footage from The Rise of Skywalker," 26 Aug. 2019 In a move that upset both conservatives and some of the more fearful sections of the gay community, Gentry, never one to mince words or hide from the truth, went public with his partner’s death. Brock Keeling, Curbed, "The rise and fall of Laguna Beach, a gay California hotspot," 26 June 2019 This upsets her and sparks anxiety that makes the stutter worse. Sue Shellenbarger, WSJ, "The Downside of Carrying the Most Weight at Work," 29 Jan. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The upset of the Huskies was Oregon’s biggest win since the 2014 season. Iliana Limón Romero, orlandosentinel.com, "2019 College Football Rankings: No. 12 Oregon pushes to shake up Pac-12," 13 Aug. 2019 The stunning upset was the result of years of practice. Author: Antonia Noori Farzan, Anchorage Daily News, "Chicago librarian dethrones record-shattering ‘Jeopardy!’ champ," 4 June 2019 There’s growing evidence that the real force behind so much political upset is far more localized. Joseph C. Sternberg, WSJ, "Europe’s ‘Nationalism’ Turns Out to Be Local," 9 May 2019 The degree of change represented by this kind of upset is illustrated by a story Foxx later told Rashad Robinson. Andrew Cockburn, Harper's magazine, "Power of Attorney," 16 Sep. 2019 That’s why most people have never heard of one of the greatest upsets in recent college football memory: Butler University over Youngstown State University in the opener of the 2018 season. Ethan Thomas, SI.com, "The Greatest Upsets in College Football History," 12 Aug. 2019 That pick-6 against Kurt Warner jump-started one of the greatest upsets in Super Bowl history, and kicked off the Patriots’ dynasty. Ben Volin, BostonGlobe.com, "Ty Law beat the odds to forge a Hall of Fame career," 3 Aug. 2019 The top half of the men's draw, meanwhile, saw more in its series of upsets, leaving defending champion Novak Djokovic with what seems like little resistance in his road to the final. Sam Farmer, latimes.com, "Coco Gauff, 15, continues her upset streak at Wimbledon," 5 July 2019 The top half of the men's draw, meanwhile, saw more in its series of upsets, leaving defending champion Novak Djokovic with what seems like little resistance in his road to the final. Howard Fendrich, sun-sentinel.com, "Delray Beach 15-year-old Coco Gauff pulls off another Wimbledon stunner," 5 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Then after a few moments, Marrone eventually went over to the bench to Ramsey, and tried to engage him, but Ramsey appeared to become even more upset. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, "Jaguars CB Jalen Ramsey held back after shouting match with coach Doug Marrone," 15 Sep. 2019 O’Connor was upset with two plays in the second half. Julia Poe, Pro Soccer USA, "Three things we learned from Orlando City’s 2-2 draw with LAFC," 10 Sep. 2019 Police responded to a gun-pointing incident in the Payne-Phalen area and were told Frits became upset by the noise the young people were making in the alley behind his home and garage. Mara H. Gottfried, Twin Cities, "Police say man, 71, pointed BB gun at youth playing tag by his St. Paul home; he says they terrorized the area," 9 Sep. 2019 This upset win gave the region a post–Civil War identity. The Atlantic, "What Is the Most Significant Sports Victory of All Time?," 8 Sep. 2019 Another risk of nighttime eating is dyspepsia, more commonly known as indigestion or an upset stomach. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "Is Late-Night Snacking Really So Wrong?," 23 Aug. 2019 Trash talk about sports, politics, and much else besides is allowed — even encouraged — but at no point are the participants permitted to leave the realm of mockery and to become genuinely upset with one another. Charles C. W. Cooke, National Review, "American Dive Bars," 22 Aug. 2019 After the firm’s general manager became visibly upset, the inspectors went to gather their things in the conference room. Katherine Eban, WIRED, "8 Ways Overseas Drug Manufacturers Dupe the FDA," 7 Aug. 2019 In 2017, her get-out-the-vote work for then-Councilman Ron Nirenberg helped propel him to an upset mayoral victory over Ivy Taylor. Gilbert Garcia, ExpressNews.com, "Podcast: Where do Castro and O’Rourke go from here?," 30 July 2019

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

Verb

1677, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1804, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Adjective

1805, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for upset

Last Updated

5 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for upset

The first known use of upset was in 1677

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More Definitions for upset

upset

verb

English Language Learners Definition of upset

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to make (someone) unhappy, worried, etc.
: to cause an unpleasant feeling in (your stomach)
: to cause (something) to be unable to continue in the expected way

upset

noun

English Language Learners Definition of upset (Entry 2 of 3)

: an occurrence in which a game, contest, etc., is won by a person or team that was expected to lose
: an unpleasant feeling of illness in your stomach
: a period of worry and unhappiness caused by something that has happened

upset

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of upset (Entry 3 of 3)

: angry or unhappy

upset

verb
up·​set | \ ˌəp-ˈset How to pronounce upset (audio) \
upset; upsetting

Kids Definition of upset

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : to worry or make unhappy The bad news upset us all.
2 : to make somewhat ill Pizza upsets my stomach.
3 : to force or be forced out of the usual position : overturn Sit down before you upset the canoe.
4 : to cause confusion in Rain upset our plans.
5 : to defeat unexpectedly

upset

noun
up·​set | \ ˈəp-ˌset How to pronounce upset (audio) \

Kids Definition of upset (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : an unexpected defeat
2 : a feeling of illness in the stomach
3 : a period of worry or unhappiness an emotional upset

upset

adjective
up·​set | \ ˌəp-ˈset How to pronounce upset (audio) \

Kids Definition of upset (Entry 3 of 3)

: emotionally disturbed or unhappy
up·​set | \ (ˌ)əp-ˈset How to pronounce upset (audio) \
upset; upsetting

Medical Definition of upset

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : to trouble mentally or emotionally the news upset me
2 : to cause a physical disorder in specifically : to make somewhat ill greasy food upsets my stomach

upset

noun
up·​set | \ ˈəp-ˌset How to pronounce upset (audio) \

Medical Definition of upset (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a minor physical disorder a stomach upset
2 : an emotional disturbance

upset

adjective
up·​set | \ (ˌ)əp-ˈset How to pronounce upset (audio) \

Medical Definition of upset (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : affected with a minor physical disturbance an upset stomach
2 : emotionally disturbed or agitated was too upset to speak

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More from Merriam-Webster on upset

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with upset

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for upset

Spanish Central: Translation of upset

Nglish: Translation of upset for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of upset for Arabic Speakers

Comments on upset

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