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petrify

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verb pet·ri·fy \ˈpe-trə-ˌfī\

Simple Definition of petrify

  • : to make (someone) very afraid

  • : to slowly change (something, such as wood) into stone or a substance like stone over a very long period of time

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of petrify

petrified

petrifying

  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to convert (organic matter) into stone or a substance of stony hardness by the infiltration of water and the deposition of dissolved mineral matter

  3. 2 :  to make rigid or inert like stone: a :  to make lifeless or inactive :  deaden <slogans are apt to petrify a man's thinking — Saturday Review> b :  to confound with fear, amazement, or awe <a novel about an airline pilot that will petrify you — Martin Levin>

  4. intransitive verb
  5. :  to become stone or of stony hardness or rigidity

Examples of petrify in a sentence

  1. the processes that petrify wood

  2. The dead tree petrified into stone.



Origin and Etymology of petrify

Middle French petrifier, from petr- + -ifier -ify


First Known Use: 1594


PETRIFY Defined for Kids

petrify

play
verb pet·ri·fy \ˈpe-trə-ˌfī\

Definition of petrify for Students

petrified

petrifying

  1. 1 :  to change plant or animal matter into stone or something like stone <petrified wood>

  2. 2 :  to frighten very much <Lightning petrifies me.>




Medical Dictionary

petrify

play
verb pet·ri·fy \ˈpe-trə-ˌfī\

Medical Definition of petrify

petrified

;

petrifying

  1. transitive verb

  2. :  to convert (organic matter) into stone or a stony substance

  3. intransitive verb

  4. :  to become stone or like stone





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