\ ˈwō How to pronounce whoa (audio) , ˈhō How to pronounce whoa (audio) , ˈhwō How to pronounce whoa (audio) \

Definition of whoa

1 a command (as to a draft animal) to stand still
2 : cease or slow a course of action or a line of thought : pause to consider or reconsider often used to express a strong reaction (such as alarm or astonishment)

Examples of whoa in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The Ford came to a stop from 70 mph in 138 feet, whereas the Nissan took 166 feet to whoa down. Elana Scherr, Car and Driver, 27 June 2022

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

First Known Use of whoa

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for whoa

Middle English whoo, who

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Time Traveler for whoa

Time Traveler

The first known use of whoa was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near whoa

who's who


who asked you?

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Statistics for whoa

Last Updated

5 Jul 2022

Cite this Entry

“Whoa.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/whoa. Accessed 7 Jul. 2022.

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More Definitions for whoa


\ ˈwō How to pronounce whoa (audio) , ˈhō, ˈhwō \

Kids Definition of whoa

used as a command to an animal carrying a rider or pulling a load to stop


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