Try Our Apps


Is irregardless a word?


[em-bar-uh s] /ɛmˈbær əs/
verb (used with object)
to cause confusion and shame to; make uncomfortably self-conscious; disconcert; abash:
His bad table manners embarrassed her.
to make difficult or intricate, as a question or problem; complicate.
to put obstacles or difficulties in the way of; impede:
The motion was advanced in order to embarrass the progress of the bill.
to beset with financial difficulties; burden with debt:
The decline in sales embarrassed the company.
verb (used without object)
to become disconcerted, abashed, or confused.
Origin of embarrass
1665-75; < French embarrasser < Spanish embarazar < Portuguese embaraçar, equivalent to em- em-1 + -baraçar, verbal derivative of baraço, baraça cord, strap, noose (of obscure origin)
Related forms
[em-bar-uh st-lee, -uh-sid-lee] /ɛmˈbær əst li, -ə sɪd li/ (Show IPA),
embarrassingly, adverb
preembarrass, verb (used with object)
unembarrassed, adjective
1. discompose, discomfit, chagrin. See confuse. 3. hamper, hinder. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for embarrassingly
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She was embarrassingly conscious that Bedford noticed it, and that his interest was heightened thereby.

    An Unknown Lover Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey
  • "Better a Bedouin in the trackless desert than a man who is forever running the gauntlet at such a risk," he said embarrassingly.

    The Broken Sword Dennison Worthington
  • Explanations followed—not embarrassingly deep ones; the moon was left out altogether.

    It Never Can Happen Again William De Morgan
  • Yet even with these deductions the amount of material is embarrassingly rich.

  • Miss Daniels did her best to be entertaining, was, in fact, embarrassingly confidential and cordial.

    Keziah Coffin Joseph C. Lincoln
British Dictionary definitions for embarrassingly


verb (mainly transitive)
(also intransitive) to feel or cause to feel confusion or self-consciousness; disconcert; fluster
(usually passive) to involve in financial difficulties
(archaic) to make difficult; complicate
(archaic) to impede; obstruct; hamper
Derived Forms
embarrassed, adjective
embarrassedly, adverb
Word Origin
C17: (in the sense: to impede): via French and Spanish from Italian imbarrazzare, from imbarrare to confine within bars; see en-1, bar1
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for embarrassingly



1670s, "perplex, throw into doubt," from French embarrasser (16c.), literally "to block," from embarras "obstacle," from Italian imbarrazzo, from imbarrare "to bar," from in- "into, upon" (see in- (2)) + Vulgar Latin *barra "bar."

Meaning "hamper, hinder" is from 1680s. Meaning "make (someone) feel awkward" first recorded 1828. Original sense preserved in embarras de richesse (1751), from French (1726): the condition of having more wealth than one knows what to do with. Related: Embarrassed; embarrassing; embarrassingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for embarrass

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for embarrassingly

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for embarrassingly