noun \ ˈrath , chiefly British ˈrȯth \
Updated on: 18 Mar 2018

Definition of wrath

1 : strong vengeful anger or indignation
2 : retributory punishment for an offense or a crime : divine chastisement

Examples of wrath in a Sentence

  1. That winter it rained in Los Angeles for three months straight, as if I had brought with me a terrible wrath that somehow agitated the atmosphere, releasing a flood of rain. —Patrick MooreTweaked2006
  2. … Reagan raised the bar for every political performer who followed. A president or presidential candidate now had to be smooth or suffer the wrath of the press. —Neal GablerLife: The Movie1998
  3. More Wrath than Terror, has seized me. I am very mad. —John Adams 26 Apr. 1777, in The Book of Abigail and John1975
  4. the wrath of the gods

  5. waited until my initial wrath had eased before voicing my complaint

Recent Examples of wrath from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of wrath

Middle English, from Old English wrǣththo, from wrāth wroth — more at wroth

Synonym Discussion of wrath

anger, ire, rage, fury, indignation, wrath mean an intense emotional state induced by displeasure. anger, the most general term, names the reaction but by itself does not convey cause or intensity.
    • tried to hide his anger
ire, more frequent in literary contexts, suggests an intense anger, often with an evident display of feeling.
    • cheeks flushed with ire
rage and fury suggest loss of self-control from violence of emotion.
    • shook with rage
    • could not contain his fury
indignation stresses righteous anger at what one considers unfair, mean, or shameful.
    • a comment that caused general indignation
wrath is likely to suggest a desire or intent to punish or get revenge.
    • I feared her wrath if I was discovered



adjective \ ˈrath , chiefly British ˈrȯth \

Definition of wrath


Examples of wrath in a Sentence

  1. … Take heed the Queen come not within his sight; / For Oberon is passing fell and wrath … —William ShakespeareA Midsummer Night's Dream1596

Origin and Etymology of wrath

alteration of wroth

WRATH Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of wrath for English Language Learners

  • : extreme anger

WRATH Defined for Kids


noun \ ˈrath \

Definition of wrath for Students

: violent anger : rage

Seen and Heard

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!


one that breaks open safes to steal

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Confusing Words—A Quiz

  • alice-with-tweedle-dee-and-tweedle-dum
  • I invented a brand new toaster robot and ______ it "Sir Toasts-a-Lot."
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!