ver·​klempt | \ fər-ˈklem(p)t How to pronounce verklempt (audio) , vər- \

Definition of verklempt

: overcome with emotion : choked up Hunched over my tiny screens lately, I've found myself … verklempt over an old video I posted of my son blowing bubbles in the bathtub.— James Poniewozik

Examples of verklempt in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tre is also a devoted son who gets a little verklempt talking about his parents, who have been married for 29 years. Kristen Baldwin,, 8 June 2021 Actor BD Wong, a San Francisco native who has achieved great acclaim on Broadway and television, was initially verklempt, struggling to contain his emotion before finding words to describe Perloff. Catherine Bigelow, San Francisco Chronicle, 9 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'verklempt.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of verklempt

1991, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for verklempt

borrowed from Yiddish farklemt "depressed, grieving," past participle of farklemen "to grip, press," going back to Middle High German verklemmen, from ver-, vir-, vor-, verb prefix, here with intensive force (going back to Old High German fir-, far- for-) + klemmen "to press, squeeze," going back to Old High German -klemmen (in biklemmen "to block, oppress"), going back to Germanic *klammjan-, derivative from a base *klamm-, whence Old English clam, clom "bond, fetter" — more at clam entry 1

Note: The spelling verklempt shows accommodation to standard German orthography.

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The first known use of verklempt was in 1991

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Last Updated

13 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Verklempt.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

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