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See more synonyms for thunderhead on Thesaurus.com
noun Meteorology.
  1. incus(def 2).
  2. cumulonimbus.
  3. the upper portion of a cumulus cloud characterized by dense, sharply defined, cauliflowerlike upper parts and sometimes by great verticality.
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Origin of thunderhead

An Americanism dating back to 1850–55; thunder + head
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

gloom, vapor, darkness, fog, smoke, puff, smog, mist, veil, steam, pother, murk, obscurity, frost, overcast, smother, scud, haze, nebula, billow

Examples from the Web for thunderhead

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • She still felt the effects of her adventure with the thunderhead.

  • After a spell like this they say of every thunderhead that appears, "That looks promising."

    In Pastures Green

    Peter McArthur

  • If it wasnt so early in the summer Id say a thunderhead was fixin up to give us a big razoo, he ventured.

    Dust of the Desert

    Robert Welles Ritchie

British Dictionary definitions for thunderhead


  1. mainly US and Canadian the anvil-shaped top of a cumulonimbus cloud
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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 thunderhead


"high-piled cloud," 1861, from thunder (n.) + head (n.).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper