an·​noy | \ ə-ˈnȯi How to pronounce annoy (audio) \
annoyed; annoying; annoys

Definition of annoy

transitive verb

1 : to disturb or irritate especially by repeated acts annoyed the neighbors with their loud arguments
2 : to harass especially by quick brief attacks

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Other Words from annoy

annoyer noun

Choose the Right Synonym for annoy

annoy, vex, irk, bother mean to upset a person's composure. annoy implies a wearing on the nerves by persistent petty unpleasantness. their constant complaining annoys us vex implies greater provocation and stronger disturbance and usually connotes anger but sometimes perplexity or anxiety. vexed by her son's failure to clean his room irk stresses difficulty in enduring and the resulting weariness or impatience of spirit. careless waste irks the boss bother suggests interference with comfort or peace of mind. don't bother me while I'm reading

synonyms see in addition worry

Examples of annoy in a Sentence

deliberately annoyed the elderly neighbor by walking across his lawn
Recent Examples on the Web Lows range from the mid-20s to near 30, which is sure to annoy all the blooming plants. Washington Post, "PM Update: Widespread freeze tonight, with cold conditions lingering Friday," 1 Apr. 2021 Scarborough mentioned, among other things, that Putin kills journalists who annoy him. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, "‘Patriot’ games, &c.," 19 Mar. 2021 Having an adhesive constantly attached to your headphones may annoy some, and at $80, the ModMic USB isn’t particularly cheap. Jeff Dunn, Ars Technica, "The Ars Technica ultimate holiday gift guide 2020," 14 Dec. 2020 Just walk the line firmly — vs. tiptoeing along it, which, among the incredibly diverse population of people who struggle with depression, seems to be the one thing that manages to annoy everybody. Washington Post, "Carolyn Hax: Clearing a path through the eggshells to talk to a depressed spouse," 9 Dec. 2020 In the meantime, drivers can enjoy a new layout and annoy their neighbors with weird sounds coming out of their Teslas. Roberto Baldwin, Car and Driver, "Tesla Holiday Update Has Farting Horn, Revised Screen Layout," 27 Dec. 2020 Through dramatic gestures such as ripping up the constitution and even tossing a drinking glass, the opposition members have tried to annoy the city’s executive branch as the latter became more compliant with Beijing’s commands. Suzanne Sataline, Los Angeles Times, "Hong Kong’s pro-democracy lawmakers resign en masse as Beijing’s grip tightens," 10 Nov. 2020 The opposing coach that seems to annoy me the most is James Franklin. Doug Lesmerises, cleveland, "Dabo Swinney is the villain that Jim Harbaugh should be: Ranking the coaches that annoy Ohio State fans the most," 30 Dec. 2020 The one feature that’s going to annoy the neighbors is Boombox mode. Roberto Baldwin, Car and Driver, "Tesla Holiday Update Has Farting Horn, Revised Screen Layout," 27 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'annoy.' 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 annoy

13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for annoy

Middle English anoien, from Anglo-French anuier, ennoier, from Late Latin inodiare to make loathsome, from Latin in + odium hatred — more at odium

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Time Traveler for annoy

Time Traveler

The first known use of annoy was in the 13th century

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Statistics for annoy

Last Updated

9 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Annoy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for annoy



English Language Learners Definition of annoy

: to cause (someone) to feel slightly angry


an·​noy | \ ə-ˈnȯi How to pronounce annoy (audio) \
annoyed; annoying

Kids Definition of annoy

: to cause to feel slightly angry or irritated

Choose the Right Synonym for annoy

annoy, pester, and tease mean to disturb and upset a person. annoy is used for bothering someone to the point of anger. I am annoyed by your bad behavior. pester is used for bothering someone over and over. Stop pestering me for more money. tease often is used for continually tormenting someone until that person is provoked or upset. They teased the child to the point of tears.

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More from Merriam-Webster on annoy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for annoy

Nglish: Translation of annoy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of annoy for Arabic Speakers

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