verb (used without object)

to cry out or speak suddenly and vehemently, as in surprise, strong emotion, or protest.

verb (used with object)

to cry out; say loudly or vehemently.

Origin of exclaim

1560–70; earlier exclame < Latin exclāmāre to cry out. See ex-1, claim
Related formsex·claim·er, nounun·ex·claim·ing, adjective

Synonyms for exclaim

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for exclaim

Contemporary Examples of exclaim

Historical Examples of exclaim

  • As they grasp the hands held out to them they exclaim, "God bless you!"

  • I 'll tell you experiences of mine, and you 'll exclaim at every step, 'How could that be?'

    Tony Butler

    Charles James Lever

  • As soon as you see him, you must give a shout of surprise, exclaim, 'My dear uncle!'

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete

    Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

  • Surprise made Jaffir exclaim, but he wasn't prepared to deny that.

    The Rescue

    Joseph Conrad

  • Overcoming a nervous contraction of the windpipe, I had managed to exclaim "Captain Falk!"


    Joseph Conrad

British Dictionary definitions for exclaim



to cry out or speak suddenly or excitedly, as from surprise, delight, horror, etc
Derived Formsexclaimer, noun

Word Origin for exclaim

C16: from Latin exclāmāre, from clāmāre to shout
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

Word Origin and History for exclaim

1560s, back-formation from exclamation or else from Middle French exclamer (16c.), from Latin exclamare "cry out loud," from ex- intensive prefix "out" (see ex-) + clamare "cry, shout, call" (see claim (v.)). Spelling influenced by claim. Related: Exclaimed; exclaiming.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper