wake-up call


Definition of wake-up call

1 : something (such as a telephone call from a hotel employee to a guest) that serves to wake a sleeper
2 : something that serves to alert a person to a problem, danger, or need a wake-up call to parents

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of wake-up call in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

That Republicans performed this poorly amid this strong an economy and this much geographic advantage should be a wake-up call to the party. Ezra Klein, Vox, "Republicans are paying the Trump tax," 7 Nov. 2018 Ben's accident was a wake-up call to the community that lifeguarding is really a dangerous profession. Ben Brazil, latimes.com, "Ben Carlson documentary seeks to highlight a local hero and lifeguards' perilous profession," 3 May 2018 Maybe this sends a wake-up call to Baton Rouge, given LSU's two best players in this draft, Key and RB Derrius Guice, both plummeted because of off-field concerns. 23. Lindsay H. Jones, USA TODAY, "40 things we learned from the 2018 NFL draft," 28 Apr. 2018 Kansas basketball coach Bill Self delivered a welcome, but somewhat startling wake-up call to senior point guard/team leader Devonté Graham on Sunday morning. Gary Bedore, kansascity, "Humble Devonté Graham takes Big 12 honor in stride, lands on one All-America team | The Kansas City Star," 5 Mar. 2018 But Amazon's snub should be a wake-up call to political and economic development leaders. Jason Williams, Cincinnati.com, "PX: Amazon snub wake-up call for Cincy. What can be done to avoid future disappointment?," 18 Jan. 2018 The 2016 election was a wake-up call, with the majority of white women either voting for Trump or not at all. Zoey Grossman; Fashion Editor: Cassie Anderson, Harper's BAZAAR, "Uzo Aduba, Katie Holmes & Ieshia Evans Reenact Iconic Images of Social Change," 20 Nov. 2018 The Point: Numbers like these should serve as a wake-up call for anyone who cares about our political institutions. Chris Cillizza, CNN, "1 poll number that should be a wake-up call for politicians," 26 Apr. 2018 Tuesday’s extraordinary primary day was a wake-up call to the old boys as four Pennsylvania women bested their opponents to run for congressional seats this November, writes columnist Maria Panaritis. Aubrey Nagle, Philly.com, "Guilty plea in grisly Bucks murders, botched repairs endanger Philly schools | Morning Newsletter," 17 May 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of wake-up call

1974, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about wake-up call

Statistics for wake-up call

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for wake-up call

The first known use of wake-up call was in 1974

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for wake-up call

wake-up call


English Language Learners Definition of wake-up call

: a telephone call that a hotel makes to your room to wake you up
: something that makes you fully understand a problem, danger, or need

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on wake-up call

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wake-up call

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wake-up call

Britannica English: Translation of wake-up call for Arabic Speakers

Comments on wake-up call

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


something valued as if it were money

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Time Traveler Quiz: Which Word Came First?

  • time traveler quiz which word came first
  • Which came first?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!