Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An imaginary or legendary creature, such as a centaur or Harpy, that combines parts from various animal or human forms.
  • noun A creature having a strange or frightening appearance.
  • noun Archaic An organism that has structural defects or deformities.
  • noun Informal A very large animal, plant, or object.
  • noun One who inspires horror or disgust.
  • adjective Informal Extremely large; monstrous.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun Anything extraordinary, supernatural, or wonderful; a thing to be wondered at; a prodigy.
  • noun A fabulous animal of grotesque or chimerical figure and often of huge size, compounded of human and brute shape, or of the shapes of various brutes, as the sagittary, centaur, sphinx, mermaid, minotaur, griffin, manticore, etc.
  • noun Any very large animal; anything unusually large of its kind.
  • noun An animal or a plant of abnormal form or structure; any living monstrosity.
  • noun A person regarded with horror because of his moral deformity, or his propensity to commit revolting or unnatural crimes.
  • noun Something unnatural and horrible.
  • noun An example: a pattern.
  • Of inordinate size or numbers: as, a monster gun; a monster meeting.
  • To exhibit; show; muster. See muster.
  • To make monstrous; exaggerate or magnify extravagantly.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun Something of unnatural size, shape, or quality; a prodigy; an enormity; a marvel.
  • noun Specifically , an animal or plant departing greatly from the usual type, as by having too many limbs.
  • noun Any thing or person of unnatural or excessive ugliness, deformity, wickedness, or cruelty.
  • adjective Monstrous in size.
  • adjective informal Enormous or very powerful.
  • transitive verb obsolete To make monstrous.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A terrifying and dangerous, wild or fictional creature.
  • noun A bizarre or whimsical creature.
  • noun An extremely cruel or antisocial person, especially a criminal.
  • noun A horribly deformed person.
  • noun figuratively A badly behaved child, a brat.
  • noun informal Something unusually large.
  • noun informal A prodigy; someone very talented in a specific domain.
  • adjective Very large; worthy of a monster.
  • verb To make into a monster; to categorise as a monster; to demonise.
  • verb To behave as a monster to; to terrorise.
  • verb To harass.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun (medicine) a grossly malformed and usually nonviable fetus
  • noun a person or animal that is markedly unusual or deformed
  • noun a cruel wicked and inhuman person
  • noun someone or something that is abnormally large and powerful
  • noun an imaginary creature usually having various human and animal parts

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English monstre, from Old French, from Latin mōnstrum, portent, monster, from monēre, to warn; see men- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English and Middle French monstre, itself from Latin monstrum.

Examples

  • [88] [1] The clause 2520 (2) -2522 (1), rendered by 'Wist I ... monster,' Gr., followed by S., translates substantially as follows: _If I knew how else I might combat the boastful defiance of the monster_.

    Beowulf An Anglo-Saxon Epic Poem

  • There is something a little abrupt in the latter part, which I doubt if I like: the Loves and Graces should not be made parties to the making of such a monster; and as _monster_ is now-a-days all adopted adjective, follow the fashion of speech, and call it "One extensive Monster-Nose."

    Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 61, No. 378, April, 1847

  • After the events of Prodigal Son, New Orleans detective Cameron O 'Connor and her partner, Michael Maddison, are recuperating after stopping a serial killer, discovering the Frankenstein monster is real, and Dr. Frankenstein is secretly plotting to unleash an army of genetically modified humans on the world.

    Rabid Reads: "Frankenstein (Book Two): City of Night" by Dean Koontz and Ed Gorman

  • Obviously I underestimated the term monster because our waiter brought out something resembling a carved out globe.

    The Appleton Post-Crescent Latest Headlines

  • Raiders are used to having a three-headed monster (and I use the term monster loosely) at running back, but with Justin Fargas gone, the monster's quantity of heads has been decreased by one.

    FanHouse Main

  • For example, the title monster of the original "Fly" movie is somewhat like the Judas Breed, in the sense that both are genetically-spliced, underground-dwelling, human-sized monsters who hide their insect identities behind awkward, makeshift masks.

    PopPolitics.com

  • For example, the title monster of the original "Fly" movie is somewhat like the Judas Breed, in the sense that both are genetically-spliced, underground-dwelling, human-sized monsters who hide their insect identities behind awkward, makeshift masks.

    PopPolitics.com

  • For example, the title monster of the original "Fly" movie is somewhat like the Judas Breed, in the sense that both are genetically-spliced, underground-dwelling, human-sized monsters who hide their insect identities behind awkward, makeshift masks.

    PopPolitics.com

  • “Dr. Frankenstein, your monster is here to see you …”

    Think Progress » Eric Cantor reveals ‘a bullet was shot through the window of my campaign office.’ (Updated)

  • Barghouti's use of the word monster, taken from remarks by Peled-Elchanan quoted in The Guardian "People ask how can these nice Jewish boys and girls become monsters once they put on a uniform." sheds light on a question which bears further examination.

    Bradley Burston: Terrorism, Racism, and the Idea That Israelis Are People, Too

Comments

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  • A town in the municipality of Westland, The Netherlands.

    January 1, 2008

  • MOnsTEr

    May 5, 2008

  • Is this term still used in pathology?

    January 8, 2011