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Word of the Day


audio pronunciation
March 12, 2012
: to criticize severely : find fault with
: to reproach severely : scold vehemently
The foreman was upbraided for not strictly enforcing the company's worksite safety policies during his shifts.

"Later that autumn, when their first three-month lease was approaching its end, the Hawkings heard that another house in the lane was unoccupied. A helpful neighbor was able to contact the owner in Dorset and upbraided her for having her house stand empty while a young couple could find no place to live." — From Kitty Ferguson's 2012 biography Stephen Hawking: An Unfettered Mind
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Did You Know?
"Upbraid," "scold," and "berate" all mean to reproach angrily, but with slight differences in emphasis. "Scold" usually implies rebuking in irritation or ill temper, either justly or unjustly. "Upbraid" tends to suggest censuring on definite and usually justifiable grounds, while "berate" implies scolding that is prolonged and even abusive. If you’re looking for a more colorful term for telling someone off, try "tongue-lash," "bawl out," "chew out," or "wig" — all of which are fairly close synonyms of "berate." Among these synonyms, "upbraid" is the senior member in English, dating from the 12th century. "Upbraid" derives via Middle English from the Old English "ūpbregdan," believed to be formed from a prefix meaning "up" and the verb "bregdan," meaning "to snatch" or " to move suddenly."

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