[ oh-ver-kuhm ]
See synonyms for: overcomeovercameovercoming on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object),o·ver·came [oh-ver-keym], /ˌoʊ vərˈkeɪm/, o·ver·come, o·ver·com·ing.
  1. to get the better of in a struggle or conflict; conquer; defeat: to overcome the enemy.

  2. to prevail over (opposition, a debility, temptations, etc.); surmount: to overcome one's weaknesses.

  1. to overpower or overwhelm in body or mind, as does liquor, a drug, exertion, or emotion: I was overcome with grief.

  2. Archaic. to overspread or overrun.

verb (used without object),o·ver·came [oh-ver-keym], /ˌoʊ vərˈkeɪm/, o·ver·come, o·ver·com·ing.
  1. to gain the victory; win; conquer: a plan to overcome by any means possible.

Origin of overcome

First recorded before 900; Middle English; Old English ofercuman; see over-, come

synonym study For overcome

1. See defeat.

Other words for overcome

Other words from overcome

  • o·ver·com·er, noun
  • un·o·ver·come, adjective

Words Nearby overcome

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use overcome in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for overcome


/ (ˌəʊvəˈkʌm) /

verb-comes, -coming, -came or -come
  1. (tr) to get the better of in a conflict

  2. (tr; often passive) to render incapable or powerless by laughter, sorrow, exhaustion, etc: he was overcome by fumes

  1. (tr) to surmount (obstacles, objections, etc)

  2. (intr) to be victorious

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