surprising

[ser-prahy-zing, suh-]

adjective

causing surprise, wonder, or astonishment.

Nearby words

  1. surprise,
  2. surprise party,
  3. surprise symphony,
  4. surprised,
  5. surprisedly,
  6. surprisingly,
  7. surra,
  8. surratt,
  9. surratt, mary eugenia,
  10. surreal

Origin of surprising

First recorded in 1570–80; surprise + -ing2

Related formssur·pris·ing·ly, adverbun·sur·pris·ing, adjectiveun·sur·pris·ing·ly, adverb

surprise

[ser-prahyz, suh-]

verb (used with object), sur·prised, sur·pris·ing.

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.

noun

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.

Origin of surprise

1425–75; (noun) late Middle English < Anglo-French surpris(e), Middle French, past participle of surprendre, equivalent to sur- sur-1 + pris (masculine), prise (feminine) < Latin prēnsus, -sa, equivalent to prēnd(ere), contracted variant of prehendere to take (see prehension) + -tus, -ta past participle suffix; (v.) late Middle English surprisen < Anglo-French surpris(e) (past participle), Middle French, as above

SYNONYMS FOR surprise
1. Surprise, astonish, amaze, astound mean to strike with wonder because of unexpectedness, strangeness, unusualness, etc. To surprise is to take unawares or to affect with wonder: surprised at receiving a telegram. To astonish is to strike with wonder by something unlooked for, startling, or seemingly inexplicable: astonished at someone's behavior. To amaze is to astonish so greatly as to disconcert or bewilder: amazed at such an evidence of stupidity. To astound is to so overwhelm with surprise that one is unable to think or act: astounded by the news.

Related formssur·pris·ed·ly [ser-prahy-zid-lee, -prahyzd-, suh-] /sərˈpraɪ zɪd li, -ˈpraɪzd-, sə-/, adverbsur·pris·er, nounsu·per·sur·prise, nounun·sur·prised, adjective

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

Examples from the Web for surprising


British Dictionary definitions for surprising

surprising

adjective

causing surprise; unexpected or amazing
Derived Formssurprisingly, adverbsurprisingness, noun

surprise

verb (tr)

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

noun

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
  1. to come upon suddenly and without warning
  2. to capture unexpectedly or catch unprepared
  3. to astonish; amaze
Derived Formssurprisal, nounsurprised, adjectivesurprisedly (səˈpraɪzɪdlɪ), adverbsurpriser, noun

Word Origin for surprise

C15: from Old French, from surprendre to overtake, from sur- 1 + prendre from Latin prehendere to grasp; see prehensile

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 surprising
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with surprising

surprise

see take by surprise.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.