abash

play
verb \ ə-ˈbash \

Definition of abash

transitive verb
:to destroy the self-possession or self-confidence of (someone) :disconcert
  • He had never blushed in his life; no humiliation could abash him.
  • —Charlotte Brontë

Examples of abash in a Sentence

  1. felt terribly abashed when she walked into the wrong hotel room

Recent Examples of abash from the Web

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Origin and Etymology of abash

Middle English abaissen, abaschen "to lose one's composure," borrowed from Anglo-French abaiss-, stem of abair "to open wide, gape, be amazed," alteration (by prefix substitution) of esbaer (Continental Old French esbahir), from es- "out" (going back to Latin ex-) + baer "to open wide, gape," going back to Vulgar Latin *batāre — more at 1ex-, abeyance

Synonym Discussion of abash

embarrass, discomfit, abash, disconcert, rattle mean to distress by confusing or confounding. embarrass implies some influence that impedes thought, speech, or action.
    • The question embarrassed her so much she couldn't answer
discomfit implies a hampering or frustrating accompanied by confusion.
    • Hecklers discomfited the speaker
abash presupposes some initial self-confidence that receives a sudden check, producing shyness, shame, or a feeling of inferiority.
    • abashed by her swift and cutting retort
disconcert implies an upsetting of equanimity or assurance producing uncertainty or hesitancy.
    • disconcerted by finding so many in attendance
rattle implies an agitation that impairs thought and judgment.
    • rattled by all the television cameras

ABASH Defined for Kids

abash

play
verb \ ə-ˈbash \

Definition of abash for Students

abashed; abashing


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