\ often read as ˈhwü, ˈwü, ˈhyü; the interjection is a whistle concluded with a voiceless ü \

Definition of whew 

: a whistling sound or a sound like a half-formed whistle uttered as an exclamation gave a long whew when he realized the size of the job used interjectionally chiefly to express amazement, discomfort, or relief

Examples of whew in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

And the view kept getting scarier: first 60% chance of rain, then 90% chance, then — whew — 100% chance for thunderstorms. Kayla Daugherty, Detroit Free Press, "Kayla Daugherty: Detroit marathon's weather change came as a surprise," 15 Oct. 2017 In it, the cunning Scheherazade staves off her execution by her husband the king, who has a nasty habit of bedding and then slaughtering his brides, by spinning more than a thousand (whew!) artfully cliff-hanging tales. Ben Brantley, New York Times, "Review: Reliving Those Arabian Nights in ‘Pay No Attention to the Girl’," 2 Apr. 2018 On the home front my wife signed up for another year (whew), and my faithful Sancho Panza, Ms. Nicole Rockstead agreed to do a 26th year with me. Neil Senturia, sandiegouniontribune.com, "2017: Some of my winners — and losers," 18 Dec. 2017 But, whew, our hottest day of the summer (so far) is behind us! A. Camden Walker, Washington Post, "D.C.-area forecast: Very toasty before big storms threaten late today, a less-sweaty weekend," 14 July 2017 On the drive home, looking in the rearview mirror and seeing your child in the back seat in a car seat, whew. Andy Staples, SI.com, "Bret Bielema is more anxious about being a new dad than closing the gap with Alabama," 10 July 2017 Canada, Colombia, the United States, Hungary, Lebanon, Israel, Russia, Mexico and, whew, Singapore. Mary Winston Nicklin, CNN, "World's best bartender Jennifer Le Nechet's favorite bars," 15 May 2017 Yep, the cover is removable and machine washable (whew). Lauren Smith, House Beautiful, "People Are Declaring This the World's Best Dog Bed," 21 June 2017 To continue the student analogy, California is now the kind of kid who can, with effort, improve his grade from a low C- or D+ to an A. Whew. Catharine Hamm, latimes.com, "Good news, travelers: Your new California driver's license may be golden in the coming years for airport security," 5 June 2017

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

1513, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for whew


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Dictionary Entries near whew

whet slate




whew duck



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Time Traveler for whew

The first known use of whew was in 1513

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More Definitions for whew


\often read as ˈhwü, ˈwü, ˈhyü\

Kids Definition of whew

: a sound almost like a whistle made as an exclamation chiefly to show amazement, discomfort, or relief … “Whew, it sure is good to be home,” …— Christopher Paul Curtis, The Watsons

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