From Middle English *amasen (to bewilder, perplex), from Old English āmasian (to confuse, astonish), from ā- (perfective prefix) + *masian (to confound), equivalent to a- +‎ maze.


  • (UK) IPA(key): /əˈmeɪz/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -eɪz


amaze (third-person singular simple present amazes, present participle amazing, simple past and past participle amazed)

  1. (transitive) To fill with wonder and surprise; to astonish, astound, surprise or perplex. [from 16th c.]
    He was amazed when he found that the girl was a robot.
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, [] (King James Version), imprinted at London: By Robert Barker, [], OCLC 964384981, Matthew 12:23:
      And all the people were amazed, and said, Is not this the son of David?
    • (Can we date this quote by Goldsmith and provide title, author’s full name, and other details?)
      Spain has long fallen from amazing Europe with her wit, to amusing them with the greatness of her Catholic credulity.
  2. (intransitive) To undergo amazement; to be astounded.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of B. Taylor to this entry?)
  3. (obsolete) To stupefy; to knock unconscious. [13th-17th c.]
  4. (obsolete) To bewilder; to stupefy; to bring into a maze.
  5. (obsolete) To terrify, to fill with panic. [16th-18th c.]
    • 1624, Democritus Junior [pseudonym; Robert Burton], The Anatomy of Melancholy: [], 2nd edition, Oxford, Oxfordshire: Printed by John Lichfield and James Short, for Henry Cripps, OCLC 54573970:
      , New York Review Books 2001, p.261:
      [Fear] amazeth many men that are to speak or show themselves in public assemblies, or before some great personages []

Related termsEdit



amaze (uncountable)

  1. (now poetic) Amazement, astonishment. [from 16th c.]
    • 1590, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene, I.ii:
      All in amaze he suddenly vp start / With sword in hand, and with the old man went [...].
    • 1891, Mary Noailles Murfree, In the "Stranger People's" Country, Nebraska 2005, p. 103:
      Shattuck looked at him in amaze.
    • 1985, Lawrence Durrell, Quinx, Faber & Faber 2004 (Avignon Quintet), p. 1361:
      She took the proffered cheque and stared at it with puzzled amaze, dazed by her own behaviour.