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earworm

1
[ eer-wurm ]
/ ˈɪərˌwɜrm /
Informal.
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noun

a tune or part of a song that repeats in one’s mind.

verb (used with object)

to work (itself or its way) into a person’s mind: The Pepsi jingles have earwormed their way into my head.

QUIZZES

QUIZ YOURSELF ON “THEIR,” “THERE,” AND “THEY’RE”

Are you aware how often people swap around “their,” “there,” and “they’re”? Prove you have more than a fair grasp over these commonly confused words.
Question 1 of 7
Which one of these commonly confused words can act as an adverb or a pronoun?

Origin of earworm

1
First recorded in 1980–85; loan translation of German Ohrwurm “catchy tune, earwig”

Definition for earworm (2 of 2)

earworm2
[ eer-wurm ]
/ ˈɪərˌwɜrm /

noun

Origin of earworm

2
First recorded in 1880–85; ear2 + worm (in the sense “small creeping animal”)
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for earworm

British Dictionary definitions for earworm

earworm
/ (ˈɪəˌwɜːm) /

noun

informal an irritatingly catchy tune

Word Origin for earworm

C20: from German Ohrwurm earwig
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
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