warp speed


Definition of warp speed

: the highest possible speed

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Other Words from warp speed

warp-speed adjective

Did You Know?

Warp speed is an example of a phrase that entered the public consciousness through science fiction and eventually gained enough popularity to end up in the dictionary. The expression was popularized on the science-fiction show Star Trek in the 1960s. On the show, warp speed referred to a specific concept, namely the idea of faster-than-light travel. Within a relatively short period of time, Star Trek gained a devoted and intense following. Fans were soon discussing the fictional concepts of the show, including warp speed, with great enthusiasm. Eventually, the term warp speed was adopted by the general population. In the process, however, it lost its specific fictional meaning and came to mean simply "the highest possible speed."

Examples of warp speed in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Even working at warp speed, most other vaccines are aiming for availability in early 2021. Popular Science, "Scientists are working on at least 135 different coronavirus vaccines," 16 June 2020 Except when she’s Roman Zolanski, her gay male alter ego, who spits saucy verses at warp speed. Aaron Gilbreath, Longreads, "The Power and Business of Hip-Hop: A Reading List on an American Art Form," 12 Sep. 2010 That was three months ago, when De Kalb’s life seemed to be moving at warp speed. oregonlive, "Grant High’s Owen De Kalb likes to tinker: 2020 senior portraits," 25 May 2020 Culpepper likens the die-cutting manufacturing process to using a metal cookie cutter of sorts — punching shields out from plastic sheeting at warp speed. NBC News, "An MIT team takes a hands-on approach to fighting coronavirus," 14 Apr. 2020 Teachers are trying and adjusting and sharing at warp speed what works and what doesn’t. Jenny Anderson, Quartz, "The coronavirus pandemic is reshaping education," 29 Mar. 2020 In a flash — and the guy seems to do everything at warp speed — Paeth had opened up a new cash register and started checking out customers. David Tarrant, Dallas News, "A North Texas grocery stocker discovers the ‘new normal’ on the coronavirus consumer crunch front lines," 20 Mar. 2020 Both models are planted and sure-footed even on tight turns, with no body lean even at warp speed, and are really fun to drive. Evelyn Kanter, Houston Chronicle, "All-new Audi S line performance has improved horsepower, torque, and fuel efficiency," 28 Feb. 2020 Koch tweeted a heart-melting video of a deliriously happy dog — tail wagging at warp speed — greeting the astronaut who had just returned from an 11-month stint on the International Space Station. NBC News, "Morning Rundown: Barr criticizes Trump, Dems face long primary, coronavirus latest," 14 Feb. 2020

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

1977, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for warp speed

from the use in science fiction of space-time warps to allow faster-than-light travel

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Time Traveler for warp speed

Time Traveler

The first known use of warp speed was in 1977

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Statistics for warp speed

Last Updated

28 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Warp speed.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/warp%20speed. Accessed 5 Jul. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on warp speed

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for warp speed

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with warp speed

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