blud·​geon | \ ˈblə-jən How to pronounce bludgeon (audio) \

Definition of bludgeon

 (Entry 1 of 2)
1 : a short stick that usually has one thick or loaded end and is used as a weapon
2 : something used to attack or bully the bludgeon of satire


bludgeoned; bludgeoning; bludgeons
Definition of bludgeon (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to hit with heavy impact was bludgeoned to death
2 : to attack or overcome by aggressive argument : bully mental bludgeoning We do not talk—we bludgeon one another with facts and theories …— Henry Miller

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Examples of bludgeon in a Sentence

Noun guards armed with bludgeons roamed the compound Verb The victim was bludgeoned to death with a hammer. bludgeoned the door with an iron bar in a senseless act of vandalism
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Their large could also double as a bludgeon in the unlikely event of a mugging. Amy Drew Thompson,, "Tampa: Birthplace of the Cuban sandwich," 13 Dec. 2020 Hegar, by contrast, has used the issue as a bludgeon. Todd J. Gillman, Dallas News, "Hegar raising cash off Cornyn’s support for Supreme Court confirmation 8 days before the election, in contrast to 2016 obstruction," 26 Oct. 2020 Hobbes tells Marshall that people often use the subject as a bludgeon. Rachel Syme, The New Yorker, "How We Lie to Ourselves About History," 12 Oct. 2020 The president’s wielding of the anthem as a bludgeon is itself a historical echo. Washington Post, "A song doesn’t have to scream U!S!A! to be patriotic. Just ask the NFL.," 3 Sep. 2020 Brown’s heavy hands bludgeon blockers at the point of contact, enabling him to reset the line of scrimmage and stack blocks against the run. John Owning, Dallas News, "Film room: 5 DTs in the NFL draft who fit the Cowboys, including one who can solve their biggest weakness," 30 Mar. 2020 In a fit of rage, Polo picks up the academic statue Marina had just won and bludgeons her. Ariana Romero,, "Elite Season 3’s Biggest Mystery, Solved (Who Killed Polo?)," 13 Mar. 2020 One week later, that promise is being used as a bludgeon against smaller ride-hailing rival Lyft. Aarian Marshall, Wired, "Uber and Lyft's Financials Reveal Two Ride-Hailing Strategies," 12 Feb. 2020 Stop using fear as a bludgeon, and consider the Reaves family. Kathryn Jean Lopez, National Review, "Please, Can We Pause for the Death of a Wife and Mother of Two?," 20 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Partisans on both sides during the Trump Presidency used immigration to bludgeon each other, but President Biden has a fresh opening for bipartisan cooperation. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Biden’s Immigration Opportunity," 19 Feb. 2021 Tufele is a bull in a china shop, as his notable athleticism, coordination and play strength enable him to bludgeon interior offensive linemen with relative consistency. John Owning, Dallas News, "Film room: 3 prospects in the 2021 NFL draft who fill major needs for the Dallas Cowboys," 27 Oct. 2020 At the time, the women, then in their 20s, were mystified why anyone would fatally bludgeon their mom in the wee hours of Oct. 28, 1978, then leave her apartment in Troy’s Somerset Park complex without taking a thing. Bill Laitner, Detroit Free Press, "Hoping social media will help, Troy police reopen mystery murder from 1978," 9 Oct. 2020 Flaws in Gruden’s team were fairly obvious entering the game, but because of Belichick’s teams’ versatility, smarts and toughness, the Patriots tend to fashion the necessary tools to bludgeon an opponent’s weaknesses. Tom Krasovic, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Raiders get the Belichick treatment, and it wasn’t pretty," 27 Sep. 2020 The heads can also serve as weapons — biologists have observed a female great hammerhead use her noggin to bludgeon a stingray. Cara Giaimo, New York Times, "The Pros and Cons of Swimming With a Hammer Head," 20 Sep. 2020 The Lakers want to bludgeon Portland early and often because they are not equipped to win a shooting contest late. oregonlive, "Credit Portland Trail Blazers’ defense for Game 1 upset or blame Los Angeles Lakers’ offense? Game 2 could tell the tale," 20 Aug. 2020 He also was convicted in state court for using a claw hammer to bludgeon to death an 80-year-old woman who suffered from polio and walked with a cane. Tim Evans, The Indianapolis Star, "Federal executions scheduled at Terre Haute prison next week will be first since 2003," 8 July 2020 Police found Lizzie's father stretched out on the couch in the sitting room bludgeoned to death. Erin Moriarty, CBS News, ""Lizzie Borden took an axe" — or did she? What would a jury say today?," 28 Mar. 2020

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


1730, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1777, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for bludgeon


origin unknown


verbal derivative of bludgeon entry 1

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Time Traveler for bludgeon Time Traveler

The first known use of bludgeon was in 1730

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Cite this Entry

“Bludgeon.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Mar. 2021.

Style: MLA
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More Definitions for bludgeon



English Language Learners Definition of bludgeon

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a heavy stick that usually has one thick end and is used as a weapon
: something that is used to attack or bully someone



English Language Learners Definition of bludgeon (Entry 2 of 2)

: to hit (someone or something) very hard
: to use arguments or threats to force (someone) to do something

More from Merriam-Webster on bludgeon

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bludgeon

Nglish: Translation of bludgeon for Spanish Speakers

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