wide·​spread | \ ˈwīd-ˈspred How to pronounce widespread (audio) \

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

The data shows that substance use disorder is still widespread, but innovations in treatment, prescribing and awareness are helping. Terry Demio, Cincinnati.com, "Supervised sites for addicted to shoot up? Try it, 2 Ohio cops say," 11 July 2019 The decision by Lightfoot comes after five years of denials by former Mayor Rahm Emanuel that the nation’s third-largest city has a widespread problem with lead in drinking water. Michael Hawthorne, chicagotribune.com, "Lightfoot pauses water meter installations after city finds spikes of brain-damaging lead in homes," 9 July 2019 There were no reports of deaths or major injuries, but lots of widespread damage. Doug Criss, CNN, "5 things to know for July 5: Fourth of July, Sudan, Chris Cline, California earthquake," 5 July 2019 Carroll University in Waukesha canceled Thursday evening classes because of widespread tree damage and power lines down on campus, said Sue Pierman, university spokeswoman. Joe Taschler, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Severe storms blow through Wisconsin; widespread tree damage and power outages reported; steamy weekend on the way," 27 June 2019 Lack of information on health care prices is a widespread problem . NBC News, "Trump order aims to disclose 'real' costs for health care," 24 June 2019 The area has gotten its fair share of strong to severe storms too, including those on June 9 that caused widespread straight-line wind damage. Jesus Jimenez, Dallas News, "Why has June been so stormy in Dallas-Fort Worth?," 20 June 2019 Anchorage Police Chief Justin Doll was able to reach other officials who had the new high-speed connection after the 7.1 magnitude quake last year caused widespread damage. Author: Rachel D'oro, Anchorage Daily News, "Big earthquake let Anchorage police test new national broadband network for first responders," 13 June 2019 In a chaotic attempt to stop people from accessing Telegram, Roskomnadzor blocked over 15 million Internet addresses associated with Google and Amazon’s cloud services, causing widespread collateral damage to those companies’ Russian business users. David Meyer, Fortune, "Russia's Latest Internet Crackdown Targets Tools for Avoiding Online Censorship," 7 June 2019

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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Statistics for widespread

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for widespread

The first known use of widespread was in 1582

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More Definitions for widespread



English Language Learners Definition of widespread

: common over a wide area or among many people


wide·​spread | \ ˈwīd-ˈspred How to pronounce widespread (audio) \

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).


something desired as essential

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