- Overwhelm is defined as to completely overcome or take over.
An example of overwhelm is for a teacher to assign students five lengthy papers due on the same day.
overwhelm definition by Webster's New World
- to pour down upon and cover over or bury beneath
- to make helpless, as with greater force or deep emotion; overcome; crush; overpower
- Obsolete to overthrow or overturn
Origin: Middle English oferwhelmen: see over- and amp; whelm
overwhelm definition by American Heritage Dictionary
transitive verb o·ver·whelmed, o·ver·whelm·ing, o·ver·whelms
- To surge over and submerge; engulf: waves overwhelming the rocky shoreline.
- a. To defeat completely and decisively: Our team overwhelmed the visitors by 40 points.b. To affect deeply in mind or emotion: Despair overwhelmed me.
- To present with an excessive amount: They overwhelmed us with expensive gifts.
- To turn over; upset: The small craft was overwhelmed by the enormous waves.