bliz·​zard | \ ˈbli-zərd How to pronounce blizzard (audio) \

Definition of blizzard

1 : a long severe snowstorm
2 : an intensely strong cold wind filled with fine snow
3 : an overwhelming rush or deluge a blizzard of mail around the holidays

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Other Words from blizzard

blizzardy \ ˈbli-​zər-​dē How to pronounce blizzard (audio) \ or less commonly blizzardly \ ˈbli-​ˌzərd-​lē How to pronounce blizzard (audio) \ adjective

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The earliest recorded appearance of the word blizzard meaning “a severe snowstorm” was in the April 23, 1870 issue of a newspaper published in Estherville, Iowa. Blizzard shows up again during the following years in several newspapers in Iowa and neighboring states, and by 1888, when a snowstorm paralyzed the Eastern seaboard, the word was well-known nationally. However, in other senses, the word blizzard existed earlier. Davy Crockett, for instance, used it twice in the 1830s, once to mean a rifle blast and once to mean for a blast of words. All of these uses seem related, but the ultimate origin of the word is still unclear.

Examples of blizzard in a Sentence

We were snowed in by a raging blizzard.
Recent Examples on the Web The destruction created a blizzard of pinkish-gray dust that seemed to coat everything; beneath the piles of rubble, jet fuel ignited fires that burned and smoked across a 16-acre area until Dec. 19. Patrick Hruby, Washington Post, 30 Aug. 2021 Yet in the hourslong presentation before the State Senate the review officials did not focus on the numbers showing Mr. Biden’s victory but instead presented a blizzard of hypotheticals, none verified, most hinting darkly at a tainted election. New York Times, 24 Sep. 2021 As Taliban fighters moved deep into the valley, the resistance fighters led by Ahmad Massoud were under growing pressure, amid a blizzard of claims and counterclaims from each side. Washington Post, 31 Aug. 2021 Indeed, Thursday's meeting comes after a blizzard of diplomacy with key allies in the Indo-Pacific. Deirdre Shesgreen, USA TODAY, 18 Mar. 2021 But with the arrival of the Delta variant, Australia has been plunged into the same cacophonous blizzard of stay-at-home orders and border closures that we were assured would see COVID-19 off last year. Gideon Rozner, National Review, 7 Sep. 2021 Shortly after Winter Storm Uri, the Texas Department of State Health Services determined that at least 111 Texans died due to the February blizzard. Robert Bryce, Forbes, 1 Sep. 2021 Knight came to a couple more of Kitchel's high school games and, during the blizzard of 1978, Kitchel made his decision. Dana Hunsinger Benbow, The Indianapolis Star, 12 Aug. 2021 Ignore the blizzard of hype, suspend all disbelief and enjoy the ride. Malcom Forbes Special To The Star Tribune, Star Tribune, 16 July 2021

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

1870, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for blizzard

origin unknown

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Time Traveler for blizzard

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The first known use of blizzard was in 1870

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Dictionary Entries Near blizzard



blizzard head

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Statistics for blizzard

Last Updated

10 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Blizzard.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for blizzard



English Language Learners Definition of blizzard

: a severe snowstorm that goes on for a long time
: a large amount of something that comes suddenly


bliz·​zard | \ ˈbli-zərd How to pronounce blizzard (audio) \

Kids Definition of blizzard

: a long heavy snowstorm


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