Why was clemency trending last week?


[uhn-der-hwelm, -welm] /ˌʌn dərˈʰwɛlm, -ˈwɛlm/
verb (used with object), Informal.
to fail to interest or astonish:
After all the ballyhoo, most critics were underwhelmed by the movie.
Origin of underwhelm
1945-50; under- + (over)whelm Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for underwhelmed
  • There is much anticipation of his arrival, but when he turns out to be a walrus, the kids are underwhelmed.
  • Upon breaking the seal, however, you may find yourself rather underwhelmed.
  • Going so far over the top that you're audience is underwhelmed.
  • Business travellers may want something more sober and could well be underwhelmed by the discounted price.
  • Finally, students risk finding themselves over- or underwhelmed with the work expectations or cultural realities at their sites.
  • After his visit, two or three were enthusiastic about his candidacy, but the majority reported being underwhelmed.
  • However, the manufacturers were underwhelmed because the methods required skill to apply and were unproven.
  • Schwartz finally got to see the lauded film and left the theater underwhelmed.
  • Bill is immediately underwhelmed by his cheerless date, and as the night grinds on, he bluntly tells her what he thinks.
  • Crowds turned out by the thousands to hear him almost everywhere he went, but they often left feeling oddly underwhelmed.
British Dictionary definitions for underwhelmed


(transitive) to make no positive impact or impression on; disappoint
Word Origin
C20: originally a humorous coinage based on overwhelm
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for underwhelmed



1953 (implied in underwhelming), a facetious play on overwhelm. Related: Underwhelmed; underwhelmingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for underwhelmed

under the wire


Done just before deadline; at the last minute: turned in under the wire

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for underwhelm

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for underwhelmed

Scrabble Words With Friends