\ ˈwin(t)s How to pronounce wince (audio) \
winced; wincing

Definition of wince

intransitive verb

: to shrink back involuntarily (as from pain) : flinch

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Other Words from wince

wince noun

Choose the Right Synonym for wince

recoil, shrink, flinch, wince, blench, quail mean to draw back in fear or distaste. recoil implies a start or movement away through shock, fear, or disgust. recoiled at the suggestion of stealing shrink suggests an instinctive recoil through sensitiveness, scrupulousness, or cowardice. shrank from the unpleasant truth flinch implies a failure to endure pain or face something dangerous or frightening with resolution. faced her accusers without flinching wince suggests a slight involuntary physical reaction (such as a start or recoiling). winced in pain blench implies fainthearted flinching. stood their ground without blenching quail suggests shrinking and cowering in fear. quailed before the apparition

Examples of wince in a Sentence

winced at the movie's graphic depiction of combat injuries
Recent Examples on the Web An approved suppository can make some people wince, let alone one that includes an unapproved peptide from China. Ike Morgan |, al, 27 May 2021 Both men wince at the notion that their disagreements are personal, rather than policy-driven. Joshua Fechter, San Antonio Express-News, 21 May 2021 So the odds are being taken on whether going total vegan—not just vegetarian—will actually draw enough people who once would have happily forked over $335 for foie gras and caviar, but who might wince at that price for peas and carrots. John Mariani, Forbes, 4 May 2021 Asian American faith leaders wince at such phrases — and blame them for helping fuel the momentum behind these hate crimes. San Diego Union-Tribune, 18 Apr. 2021 From the sidelines, coal firms will scowl at efforts to curb demand in Asia and oil drillers wince at support for electric cars. The Economist, 18 Apr. 2021 Eliza tries not to wince when their parents unwittingly misgender them. Laura Newberry, Los Angeles Times, 24 Mar. 2021 Some goaltenders wince when the shootout is mentioned. Joe Reedy, Star Tribune, 7 Feb. 2021 Whenever President Trump tweets something controversial or without merit, many Republican lawmakers seemingly wince, but eventually find a way to move past it. TheWeek, 9 June 2020

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

circa 1748, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for wince

Middle English wynsen to kick out, start, from Anglo-French *wincer, *guincer to shift direction, dodge, by-form of guenchir, probably of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German wenken, wankōn to totter — more at wench

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Time Traveler for wince

Time Traveler

The first known use of wince was circa 1748

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Statistics for wince

Last Updated

4 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Wince.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for wince



English Language Learners Definition of wince

: to have an expression on your face for a very short time which shows that you are embarrassed or in pain


\ ˈwins How to pronounce wince (audio) \
winced; wincing

Kids Definition of wince

: to draw back (as from pain)

More from Merriam-Webster on wince

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wince

Nglish: Translation of wince for Spanish Speakers


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