Origin of surprising
- to strike or occur to with a sudden feeling of wonder or astonishment, as through unexpectedness: Her beauty surprised me.
- to come upon or discover suddenly and unexpectedly: We surprised the children raiding the cookie jar.
- to make an unexpected assault on (an unprepared army, fort, person, etc.).
- to elicit or bring out suddenly and without warning: to surprise the facts from the witness.
- to lead or bring unawares, as into doing something not intended: to surprise a witness into telling the truth.
- an act or instance of surprising or being surprised.
- something that surprises someone; a completely unexpected occurrence, appearance, or statement: His announcement was a surprise to all.
- an assault, as on an army or a fort, made without warning.
- a coming upon unexpectedly; detecting in the act; taking unawares.
- take by surprise,
- to come upon unawares.
- to astonish; amaze: The amount of the donation took us completely by surprise.
Origin of surprise
SynonymsSee more synonyms for surprise on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for surprising
And yet as Robert Ward discovered, Marvin—for all of his larger-than-life machismo—was surprising in real life.The Story Behind Lee Marvin’s Liberty Valance Smile
January 3, 2015
This was very blunt and surprising to hear from any official in charge of an aviation disaster.Did Bad Weather Bring Down AirAsia 8501?
December 29, 2014
Yet King and others are likely to find new support for such measures thanks to a surprising source: the President.The Progressive Case Against Birthright Citizenship
December 15, 2014
We will see some surprising groups, maybe a legion of them, face the Six.Gail Simone’s Bisexual Catman and the ‘Secret Six’
December 6, 2014
In some ways, the rapid spread of the virus there should not be surprising.Millions Promised for Ebola Not Adding Up
November 25, 2014
But he could not help looking back to wonder at the surprising likeness.Brave and Bold
There seemed to be no reserve with this surprising young person.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
Under the circumstances, it is surprising how much of plainness women have preserved.The Bacillus of Beauty
My chief pleasure in life, professor, is the surprising of you.In the Midst of Alarms
We use modern methods on Indian material and the results are most surprising.Her Father's Daughter
- causing surprise; unexpected or amazing
- to cause to feel amazement or wonder
- to encounter or discover unexpectedly or suddenly
- to capture or assault suddenly and without warning
- to present with something unexpected, such as a gift
- (foll by into) to provoke (someone) to unintended action by a trick, etcto surprise a person into an indiscretion
- (often foll by from) to elicit by unexpected behaviour or by a trickto surprise information from a prisoner
- the act or an instance of surprising; the act of taking unawares
- a sudden or unexpected event, gift, etc
- the feeling or condition of being surprised; astonishment
- (modifier) causing, characterized by, or relying upon surprisea surprise move
- take by surprise
- to come upon suddenly and without warning
- to capture unexpectedly or catch unprepared
- to astonish; amaze
Word Origin and History for surprising
late 14c., "unexpected attack or capture," from Middle French surprise "a taking unawares," from noun use of past participle of Old French surprendre "to overtake," from sur- "over" (see sur-) + prendre "to take," from Latin prendere, contracted from prehendere "to grasp, seize" (see prehensile). Meaning "something unexpected" first recorded 1590s, that of "feeling caused by something unexpected" is c.1600. Meaning "fancy dish" is attested from 1708.
A Surprize is ... a dish ... which promising little from its first appearance, when open abounds with all sorts of variety. [W. King, "Cookery," 1708]
Surprise party originally was a military detachment (1841); festive sense is attested from 1858.
Idioms and Phrases with surprising
see take by surprise.