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[ih-nawr-muh s] /ɪˈnɔr məs/
greatly exceeding the common size, extent, etc.; huge; immense:
an enormous fortune.
outrageous or atrocious:
enormous wickedness; enormous crimes.
Origin of enormous
1525-35; enorm + -ous
Related forms
enormously, adverb
1. vast, colossal, gigantic, mammoth, prodigious, stupendous. See huge. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for enormous
  • Because large areas of the cortex interpret signals from the palms and fingers, the hands of the homunculus are enormous.
  • But, the statistical benefits to a large database of health information are enormous.
  • The enormous range of possibilities makes choosing the right tree a challenge.
  • The menu is enormous, and almost everything is good, from a pretty seaweed salad to broiled yellowtail collar.
  • Their electricity bill must be enormous.
  • But the rewards of country life are enormous.
  • The outrage was enormous.
  • It is time to start searching closets for the ankle-length parkas and enormous boots, giving up any semblance of fashion.
  • The enormous trees aren't the park's only living attraction.
  • Inside the lobby, people lounge at the bar and sprawl on enormous couches grouped around a fireplace.
British Dictionary definitions for enormous


unusually large in size, extent, or degree; immense; vast
(archaic) extremely wicked; heinous
Derived Forms
enormously, adverb
enormousness, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin ēnormis, from ē- out of, away from + norma rule, pattern
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
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Word Origin and History for enormous

1530s, from Latin enormis "out of rule, irregular, shapeless, extraordinary, very large," from ex- "out of" (see ex-) + norma "rule, norm" (see norm), with English -ous substituted for Latin -is.

Meaning "extraordinary in size" is attested from 1540s; original sense of "outrageous" is more clearly preserved in enormity. Earlier in same sense was enormyous (mid-15c.). Related: Enormously.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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