ag·​o·​niz·​ing | \ ˈa-gə-ˌnī-ziŋ How to pronounce agonizing (audio) \

Definition of agonizing

: causing agony

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Other Words from agonizing

agonizingly adverb

Examples of agonizing in a Sentence

a long and agonizing battle with cancer She made the agonizing decision to cancel the trip. The agonizing wait was finally over. He was in agonizing pain.
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Recent Examples on the Web Such agonizing waits have been occurring with increasing frequency around Douai, a city of 40,000 in northern France, and in other areas with a scarcity of physicians. New York Times, "In France, Dying at Home Can Mean a Long Wait for a Doctor," 16 Dec. 2019 The sometimes-agonizing process could end at 3:15 p.m. Wednesday, when MLB Network broadcasts the results of the 2018 Baseball Writers’ Association of America election. Dennis Lin,, "Trevor Hoffman awaits another Hall of Fame announcement," 23 Jan. 2018 When jockey Flavien Prat filed one of two rider objections in the Derby, his 65-1 longshot Country House was shockingly elevated to the winner’s circle after the agonizing, unprecedented mulling by stewards. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Jockey Flavien Prat shifts from epic Kentucky Derby to chase for Del Mar title," 28 Aug. 2019 Our coverage begins with a preview on July 5 and Stage 1 on July 6, then wraps up three agonizing, dramatic, bloodstained, and glorious weeks later on July 28. Marc Peruzzi, Outside Online, "Lance Armstrong's Analysis of the 2019 Tour de France," 5 July 2019 Perhaps this season's drought would be more agonizing had Bell not found the end zone already during his debut season. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan's Ronnie Bell has career game, but end zone remains elusive this season," 18 Nov. 2019 But some of this group is loyal to the Democratic Unionist Party and will face an agonizing decision. Richard Allen Greene, CNN, "Has Boris Johnson's Brexit deal got the votes to pass the UK Parliament?," 18 Oct. 2019 When Patterson elected to pass on the NFL draft and return to Michigan for his senior season, the memory of that agonizing experience in Columbus played a role in his decision. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan football, Shea Patterson still feel the burn of excruciating Ohio State loss," 26 Nov. 2019 Suddenly, an already agonizing home defeat has another layer of mystifying detail that raises significant questions about how the Bears botched that potential game-winning situation. Dan Wiederer,, "Eddy Pineiro didn’t want the ball on the left hash for his game-deciding kick. But, ‘it is what it is.’," 30 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'agonizing.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of agonizing

1570, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for agonizing

from present participle of agonize

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Time Traveler for agonizing

Time Traveler

The first known use of agonizing was in 1570

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Statistics for agonizing

Last Updated

20 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Agonizing.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for agonizing


How to pronounce agonizing (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of agonizing

: very mentally or physically painful

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