Definition of meteor in US English:



  • A small body of matter from outer space that enters the earth's atmosphere, becoming incandescent as a result of friction and appearing as a streak of light.

    • ‘This convergence of government officials does not happen when a meteor falls to Earth.’
    • ‘The witness observed two objects that were moving so fast they appeared to be meteors or shooting stars, they moved so fast.’
    • ‘This will produce a surge of mostly faint meteors over Europe and Asia.’
    • ‘The meteor's light cuts through the fog as it falls directly towards them.’
    • ‘The chunks and pieces of the planet after the explosion could explain the asteroids, meteors and comets.’
    • ‘A shield would protect each community from meteors and space debris.’
    • ‘The meteors can appear in any part of the sky, so make sure that you have as wide a view of it as possible.’
    • ‘Each time a meteor crosses the atmosphere, it leaves behind a short trail of ionised particles.’
    • ‘It may also raise the number of random meteors seen from Earth streaking across the sky.’
    • ‘He thought he had seen a meteor but before the light disappeared it changed direction.’
    • ‘Eastern Cape residents could have stars in their eyes later this month when meteors from a passing comet provide an extra-terrestrial show.’
    • ‘Each time a meteor crosses through the atmosphere, it leaves behind a short trail of ionised particles.’
    • ‘Light from a passing meteor is recorded on several security cameras.’
    • ‘Observers often mistake these re-entering objects for meteors or UFOs.’
    • ‘In the mean time, let's keep hoping for an extinction-level meteor to hit the earth just so it takes him out too.’
    • ‘Evening meteors much catch Earth by having an orbital velocity greater than the planet.’
    • ‘Huge parts of the ceiling came hurtling at them like meteors from outer space.’
    • ‘There are meteors and comets and supernovas and yes, black holes.’
    • ‘Whitehead thinks that the meteor entered the Earth's atmosphere at a low angle.’
    • ‘Experts predict that at most a meteor could flash across the sky every minute or two at peak times.’
    falling star, shooting star, fireball, meteorite, bolide, meteoroid, comet
    View synonyms


Mid 16th century (denoting any atmospheric phenomenon): from modern Latin meteorum, from Greek meteōron, neuter (used as a noun) of meteōros ‘lofty’.