Children's, Intermediate and Advanced Online English Dictionary & Thesaurus

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sr praIz [or] s praIz
parts of speech:
transitive verb, noun
Word Combinations (verb, noun), Word History, Word Builder, Word Explorer, Grammatical Patterns, Word Parts
part of speech: transitive verb
inflections: surprises, surprising, surprised
definition 1: to act upon (someone or something) without warning; to catch unawares.
He surprised her with an engagement ring.She hides in the closet and then surprises her little brother by jumping out when he opens it.Try not to surprise the animal by coming too close.
similar words:
amaze, catch, startle
definition 2: to prompt a feeling of mild shock or wonder in; take aback; amaze.
His rough language surprised everyone.Her natural talent for golf surprised both herself and her friends.It surprised me that she would say such a strange thing.[it + verb + smby + that + clause ] I should expect it by now, but it always surprises me when he does things like that.[it + verb + smby + when + clause ] It surprised her parents to hear that she and her husband had decided to divorce.[it + verb + smby + infinitive ]
amaze, astonish, astound, bowl over
similar words:
awe, dumbfound, flabbergast, floor, shock, stagger, startle, stun, stupefy
definition 3: to attack without warning.
The troops surprised the enemy at dawn.
ambuscade, ambush, bushwhack
similar words:
definition 4: to cause (someone) to react in a way not intended.
The sudden accusation surprised her into a tearful confession.
similar words:
disconcert, fluster, ruffle, shock, unnerve
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part of speech: noun
definition 1: the act of surprising.
definition 2: the state of being surprised, astonished, or struck with wonder.
amazement, astonishment, wonderment
definition 3: that which brings about such a state.
bombshell, shocker, stunner
definition 4: anything unexpected.
similar words:
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derivations: surprisedly (adv.), surpriser (n.)
Word History
When it entered the English language from early French, surprise meant "to overtake."
Word Builder: surprise +
  • surprised:
    showing surprise.
  • surprising:
    causing surprise.
Word Explorer
  emotion, fear
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