wide·​spread | \ˈwīd-ˈspred \

Definition of widespread 

1 : widely diffused or prevalent widespread public interest

2 : widely extended or spread out low, widespread hood and fendersTime a widespread erosion surface— C. B. Hitchcock

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Examples of widespread in a Sentence

There is widespread public interest in the election. Trade partners had become more widespread. There was widespread opposition to the plan.
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Recent Examples on the Web

There is no shortage of physical pain in Congo, but psychological distress is even more widespread, not to mention enduring. Nick Turse, Teen Vogue, "The Democratic Republic of Congo Has Humanitarian Crises Leaving Millions of Children In Danger," 14 Nov. 2018 Schumer urges Trump to tap Merrick Garland for Supreme Court » Barrett enjoys the widespread and often passionate support of colleagues stretching back to her days as a clerk for the late Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia 20 years ago. Dan Hinkel, chicagotribune.com, "Potential Trump Supreme Court pick Barrett: Catholic Chicago judge stirs abortion debate," 5 July 2018 But its use of them was particularly widespread and notorious. Jeremy Roebuck, Philly.com, "Ex-child soldiers say Delco man turned them into killers," 19 June 2018 The area was widespread and open, an analogue to Wyoming with grills and bars at every turn. Steven J. Horowitz, Billboard, "Kanye West and Kid Cudi Debut 'Kids See Ghosts' Album in Santa Clarita," 8 June 2018 Yet regardless of their first-round vote, most Brazilians seem to support democracy as the best system of government, which is in keeping with high turnout numbers and widespread peaceful protests in recent months. Amy Erica Smith, Mollie Cohen, Matthew Layton, Vox, "Did Brazilians vote against democracy on Sunday?," 30 Oct. 2018 In today’s rapid-fire digital age, where looks shown on the runway are widespread on Instagram before the final parade of models even concludes, CyFi’s mission to teach others about tech security and privacy is certainly relevant. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "How This Teenage Hacker Became an Unlikely Star of London Fashion Week," 16 Sep. 2018 When it was finally released, the video sparked outrage and led to widespread protests as well as calls to gut the Chicago Police Department. Barnini Chakraborty, Fox News, "Rahm Emanuel leaves behind tainted legacy as Chicago murder rate, crime and corruption surge on his watch," 6 Sep. 2018 Some general clinicians and urologists are also certified in anal screening, but this isn't widespread, Dr. Paskett says. Korin Miller, SELF, "Throat and Anal Cancers Caused by HPV Are on the Rise—Here's How to Stay Safe," 24 Aug. 2018

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

1582, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

2 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for widespread

The first known use of widespread was in 1582

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English Language Learners Definition of widespread

: common over a wide area or among many people


wide·​spread | \ˈwīd-ˈspred \

Kids Definition of widespread

1 : widely stretched out widespread wings

2 : widely scattered widespread public interest

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Comments on widespread

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


a nest or breeding place

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