up·​surge ˈəp-ˌsərj How to pronounce upsurge (audio)
: a rapid or sudden rise
an upsurge in interest

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An upsurge in drug use sometimes leads to an upsurge in crime. An upsurge of flu cases can be cause for alarm. And an upsurge of fury at overpaid CEOs might lead to new legislation to restrain high salaries. We seem to use upsurge more in negative contexts than in positive ones, but not always; we usually welcome an upsurge of consumer confidence, an upsurge in new-car sales, or an upsurge in the stock market.

Examples of upsurge in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Further measures became necessary due to an upsurge in development projects after World War II, such as the installation of the U.S. Interstate Highway System in the 1950s. Jack Knudson, Discover Magazine, 17 Jan. 2024 And the abrupt upsurge of demand for wind turbines after Russia cut off natural gas to Europe has left the supply cupboard bare. Alfredo Sosa, The Christian Science Monitor, 17 Jan. 2024 This set the foundation for the tremendous upsurge in workers mobilizing, organizing and demanding change. Daniel Miller, Los Angeles Times, 22 Dec. 2023 At the time Volodin spoke those words, the Kremlin was basking in an upsurge of national euphoria following the annexation of Crimea. Andrei Kolesnikov, Foreign Affairs, 1 Dec. 2023 Research suggests these increases in autoimmune diseases are related to remarkable changes in our environment and lifestyles, including alterations in diet and upsurges in obesity, sleep deprivation, stress, air pollution, exposure to toxic chemicals, and infections. Olivia Casey, Scientific American, 1 Dec. 2023 This left has driven and benefited from the upsurge in labor organizing. Raina Lipsitz, The New Republic, 20 Oct. 2023 Three out of the six films in the Copia Final section are from Central American and the Caribbean, reflecting the upsurge of local cinema from those small territories. Anna Marie De La Fuente, Variety, 14 Nov. 2023 The United Nations health agency had taken the unusual step of publicly asking China to provide more information about the upsurge. Owen Hayes, NBC News, 30 Nov. 2023 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1917, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of upsurge was in 1917

Dictionary Entries Near upsurge

Cite this Entry

“Upsurge.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition


up·​surge ˈəp-ˌsərj How to pronounce upsurge (audio)
: a rapid or sudden rise
an upsurge of popularity

More from Merriam-Webster on upsurge

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