be·​siege | \ bi-ˈsēj How to pronounce besiege (audio) , bē- \
besieged; besieging

Definition of besiege

transitive verb

1 military : to surround with armed forces The army had besieged the castle.
2a : to press with requests : importune besieging the royal ministers with petitions …— T. B. Costain besieged by the media
b : to cause worry or distress to : beset doubts besieged him

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Other Words from besiege

besieger noun

Synonyms for besiege


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Examples of besiege in a Sentence

Customers have besieged the company with questions.
Recent Examples on the Web Americans younger than 30 have grown up with Israel as the strongest power in the region, using its dominance to control the lives of Palestinians in the West Bank and to besiege those in Gaza. David Lauter, Los Angeles Times, 21 May 2021 A week later, only nine others voted with her to impeach former President Donald J. Trump for encouraging a mob of his supporters to besiege the Capitol on Jan. 6. New York Times, 3 Feb. 2021 Trump's supporters then moved to besiege the Capitol — triggering unsettling scenes of disorder unlike anything Washington has seen in recent memory. Star Tribune, 6 Jan. 2021 Ponzi later wrote, foreshadowing the runs that would soon enough besiege him. Daniel Akst, WSJ, 15 Oct. 2020 In Ukraine’s Odesa, traffic jams at the entrance to the city spread for kilometers (miles), and crowds besiege the city’s night clubs after sunset. USA TODAY, 9 July 2020 Juárez, once besieged on the Gulf coast, was driven into the far northwest of Mexico. Dan Mclaughlin, National Review, 5 May 2020 His Warriors, besieged by injuries and offseason defections, are the only team statistically eliminated from the playoffs. Dan Woike, Los Angeles Times, 30 Apr. 2020 Dickies, known for its durable work clothing, is converting plants in Mexico and Honduras to produce FDA-compliant isolation gowns for U.S. hospitals and health care workers besieged by sick patients during the coronavirus pandemic. Kevin Krause, Dallas News, 16 Apr. 2020

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

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for besiege

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

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Statistics for besiege

Last Updated

26 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Besiege.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for besiege



English Language Learners Definition of besiege

: to surround a city, building, etc., with soldiers and try to take control of it
: to gather around (someone) in a way that is aggressive, annoying, etc.
: to overwhelm (someone) with too many questions or requests for things


be·​siege | \ bi-ˈsēj How to pronounce besiege (audio) \
besieged; besieging

Kids Definition of besiege

1 : to surround with armed forces for the purpose of capturing The army besieged the castle.
2 : to crowd around The movie star was besieged by photographers.
3 : to overwhelm with questions or requests … the monks around me besieged me with eager questions …— Mark Twain, A Connecticut Yankee


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