intense

adjective

in·​tense in-ˈten(t)s How to pronounce intense (audio)
1
a
: existing in an extreme degree
The excitement was intense.
intense pain
b
: having or showing a characteristic in extreme degree
intense colors
2
: marked by or expressive of great zeal, energy, determination, or concentration
intense effort
3
a
: exhibiting strong feeling or earnestness of purpose
an intense student
b
: deeply felt
intensely adverb
intenseness noun

Examples of intense in a Sentence

He shielded his eyes from the intense flash of light. She has an intense dislike for her husband's friend. After many years of intense study, he received his medical degree. School reform is a subject of intense debate. The work requires intense concentration. He was an intense young man who was very determined to do well in school.
Recent Examples on the Web The most intense bottlenecks appear to be in the path of totality, a vast swath of the country – approximately 115 miles wide, crossing through 13 states – where people can see a total eclipse. Christopher Cann, USA TODAY, 8 Apr. 2024 Canceling incentives is especially hard when competition is intense. Geoff Colvin, Fortune, 8 Apr. 2024 Reinhart thinks the Fed will cut interest rates in June, in part because officials will want to get ahead of the election season when their strategy will be subject to more intense political scrutiny. Matt Egan, CNN, 8 Apr. 2024 Cartoon by Colin Tom Copy link to cartoon Copy link to cartoon Link copied Shop Shop Rogers, by her own admission, can be intense. Amanda Petrusich, The New Yorker, 8 Apr. 2024 Your Ultimate 2024 Leo Horoscope, as Predicted by a Celebrity Astrologer Capricorn (Dec. 22 to Jan. 19) The emotions of the week ahead could be quite intense for you, Capricorn! Kyle Thomas, Peoplemag, 7 Apr. 2024 The fallout and intense scrutiny of the planemaker after the Alaska Airlines 737 Max 9 door plug blowout in January isn’t abating, and Boeing is losing a ton of money and consumer confidence in the process. Morgan Haefner, Quartz, 7 Apr. 2024 Racing around the environment’s futuristic track, steering, acceleration, and the overall gameplay felt smooth, without screen tearing, any heavy swells or ebbs in the frame rate, or any kind of slowdowns in more graphically intense moments. John Burek, PCMAG, 6 Apr. 2024 The current war is much more intense and complex than previous rounds of fighting, said Avivi. Louisa Loveluck, Washington Post, 6 Apr. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'intense.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Middle English, from Middle French, from Latin intensus, from past participle of intendere to stretch out

First Known Use

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of intense was in the 15th century

Dictionary Entries Near intense

Cite this Entry

“Intense.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/intense. Accessed 15 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

intense

adjective
in·​tense in-ˈten(t)s How to pronounce intense (audio)
1
: existing in an extreme degree
intense pain
2
: done or performed with great zeal, energy, or eagerness
intense study
3
: feeling deeply
an intense actor
intensely adverb
intenseness noun

Medical Definition

intense

adjective
in·​tense in-ˈten(t)s How to pronounce intense (audio)
1
a
: existing in an extreme degree
intense anxiety
b
: extremely marked or pronounced
a neurodermatitis with intense itching and burning of the skinH. G. Armstrong
c
: very large or considerable
intense radiation
2
a
: feeling deeply especially by nature or temperament
b
: deeply felt
intense emotions
intensely adverb

More from Merriam-Webster on intense

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