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See more synonyms for tempestuous on Thesaurus.com
  1. characterized by or subject to tempests: the tempestuous ocean.
  2. of the nature of or resembling a tempest: a tempestuous wind.
  3. tumultuous; turbulent: a tempestuous period in history.
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Origin of tempestuous

1500–10; < Late Latin tempestuōsus, derivative of tempestus, variant of tempestās tempest (see -ous); replacing earlier tempeste(u)ous, tempestious (see -eous, -ious)
Related formstem·pes·tu·ous·ly, adverbtem·pes·tu·ous·ness, nounun·tem·pes·tu·ous, adjectiveun·tem·pes·tu·ous·ly, adverbun·tem·pes·tu·ous·ness, noun

Synonyms for tempestuous

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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for tempestuous

impassioned, passionate, turbulent, heated, agitated, blustery, boisterous, breezy, coarse, emotional, excited, feverish, furious, gusty, hysterical, intense, raging, rough, rugged, unbridled

Examples from the Web for tempestuous

Contemporary Examples of tempestuous

Historical Examples of tempestuous

  • The sun went down on its wrath, and its night was tempestuous.

    Weighed and Wanting

    George MacDonald

  • The Sabbath of the eleventh of March was wet and tempestuous.

  • "A tempestuous wind called Euroclydon," repeated the reader.

    An Old Sailor's Yarns

    Nathaniel Ames

  • He is a tempestuous person, but can be very grave when he likes.

    Love and Lucy

    Maurice Henry Hewlett

  • He was short-breathed, asthmatic and possessed a tempestuous temper.

    Up the Forked River

    Edward Sylvester Ellis

British Dictionary definitions for tempestuous


  1. of or relating to a tempest
  2. violent or stormya tempestuous love affair
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Derived Formstempestuously, adverbtempestuousness, noun
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 tempestuous


mid-15c., from Latin tempestuosus, from tempestas (see tempest). The figurative sense is older in English; literal sense is from c.1500. Related: Tempestuously.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper