whim

noun
\ ˈhwim How to pronounce whim (audio) , ˈwim\

Definition of whim

1 : a capricious or eccentric and often sudden idea or turn of the mind : fancy quit his job on a whim
2 : a large capstan that is made with one or more radiating arms to which a horse may be yoked and that is used in mines for raising ore or water

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Choose the Right Synonym for whim

caprice, whim, vagary, crotchet mean an irrational or unpredictable idea or desire. caprice stresses lack of apparent motivation and suggests willfulness. by sheer caprice she quit her job whim implies a fantastic, capricious turn of mind or inclination. an odd antique that was bought on a whim vagary stresses the erratic, irresponsible character of the notion or desire. he had been prone to strange vagaries crotchet implies an eccentric opinion or preference. a serious scientist equally known for his bizarre crotchets

Examples of whim in a Sentence

It's hard to predict voters' whims. on a whim, we stopped at the roadside stand to get ice cream

Recent Examples on the Web

Eichhorn does lightly gesture to a kind of universal human right, one that runs counter to the whims of companies that use data. Nausicaa Renner, The New Yorker, "How Social Media Shapes Our Identity," 8 Aug. 2019 Over half a century, Diamond Creek has remained a constant, never succumbing to the whims of fashion, even when that meant sacrificing critical popularity. Esther Mobley, SFChronicle.com, "Remembering Boots Brounstein, who revolutionized the idea of Napa Valley terroir at Diamond Creek Vineyards," 6 Aug. 2019 Rather than leaving it to the whims of the president and Justice Department officials, Booker’s plan, like Klobuchar’s, would aim to turn the clemency process into an avenue for systemic, longer-lasting reform. German Lopez, Vox, "Cory Booker has a plan to reform the criminal justice system — without Congress," 20 June 2019 The intensifying political pressure now puts Powell in an almost impossible position, wherein any rate cut that is warranted by economic metrics might give the impression that the Fed has given in to the whims of the White House. NBC News, "Fed Chairman Powell facing toughest call yet as Trump pushes for rate cut," 19 June 2019 This makes them immune to the whims of national governments but also makes them prone to speculative bubbles and flash crashes. Jay L. Zagorsky, The Conversation, "Facebook claims Libra offers economic empowerment to billions – an economist is skeptical," 18 June 2019 Mobility for Americans should not be curtailed according to the whims of any president. WSJ, "Tourism in Cuba Supports a Repressive State," 13 June 2019 Though other public officials in Alabama often face growing pains and hostile staffs after displacing incumbents, sheriffs are especially vulnerable to the whims of their predecessors. Connor Sheets, ProPublica, "Wasted Funds, Destroyed Property: How Sheriffs Undermined Their Successors After Losing Reelection," 12 June 2019 Though other public officials in Alabama often face growing pains and hostile staffs after displacing incumbents, sheriffs are especially vulnerable to the whims of their predecessors. Connor Sheets | Csheets@al.com, al.com, "After losing reelection, these Alabama sheriffs took it out on their successors - and the public," 12 June 2019

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

1686, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for whim

short for whim-wham

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Learn More about whim

Dictionary Entries near whim

whillywha

whilom

whilst

whim

whimbrel

whim gin

whimper

Statistics for whim

Last Updated

12 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for whim

The first known use of whim was in 1686

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More Definitions for whim

whim

noun

English Language Learners Definition of whim

: a sudden wish, desire, decision, etc.

whim

noun
\ ˈhwim How to pronounce whim (audio) , ˈwim\

Kids Definition of whim

: a sudden wish or desire : a sudden change of mind

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More from Merriam-Webster on whim

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with whim

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for whim

Spanish Central: Translation of whim

Nglish: Translation of whim for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of whim for Arabic Speakers

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