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


guards armed with bludgeons roamed the compound


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

The Rams’ Aaron Donald, who leads the league in sacks, bludgeons quarterbacks from the inside. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The Modern NFL Is Moving Beyond the ‘Blind Side’ to a New Guard," 13 Dec. 2018 Using the argument of art’s truth as a bludgeon, Annie dismisses her son’s feelings, offering an even harsher version of the neglect on display by the self-servingly deluded poet-mother in Augusten Burroughs’s memoir Running With Scissors. Katherine Fusco, The Atlantic, "Hereditary and the Monstrousness of Creative Moms," 11 July 2018 Carl DeMaio, chairman of the initiative campaign, threatened Wednesday on Twitter to launch recall campaigns against two more Democratic senators and use the gas tax as a political bludgeon against half a dozen Assembly Democrats. Alexei Koseff, sacbee, "Rent control, data privacy and gas taxes for roads: Get ready for the next election," 7 June 2018 Using the dollar as a bludgeon has already led to capricious and arbitrary decision-making. The Economist, "America must use sanctions cautiously," 19 May 2018 An offense built to bludgeon did so, after almost a week of inability. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Astros return to standard operating procedure in win over Mariners," 19 Apr. 2018 The UK’s requirement is one of the first countrywide attempts at using public transparency and accountability as a bludgeon against the stubborn gender wage gap. Bryce Covert, The New Republic, "What the U.S. Can Learn from Britain on Equal Pay," 10 Apr. 2018 Allegations of corruption have long been used as a political bludgeon in Saudi Arabia, where pilfering from the public till has often been synonymous with royalty. Karl Vick, Time, "The Saudi Crown Prince Thinks He Can Transform the Middle East. Should We Believe Him?," 5 Apr. 2018 The effect is devastating, a rapier to the president’s bludgeon. The Economist, "Why Stormy Daniels is so dangerous," 22 Mar. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Two homeless men sleeping on the beach were bludgeoned in the head early on Sept. 8 and Sept. 10, leaving one in critical condition, officials said. Christopher Weber And Elliot Spagat, Fox News, "Man with long immigration record is charged with killings," 28 Sep. 2018 Two homeless men sleeping on the beach were bludgeoned in the head early on Sept. 8 and Sept. 10, leaving one in critical condition, officials said. Christopher Weber, The Seattle Times, "Man with long immigration record is charged with killings," 26 Sep. 2018 European political risks may increase, as Germany could soon gain a new leader and the European Union tries to bludgeon Italy into an anti-growth budget. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "America Is Not an Island," 15 Nov. 2018 Two additional murder counts were expected in Ventura County in the March 13, 1980, slayings of Charlene and Lyman Smith, who were bludgeoned by a piece of firewood. Sam Stanton, Benjy Egel And Ryan Lillis, sacbee, "Update: East Area Rapist suspect captured after DNA match, authorities say," 26 Apr. 2018 True did not respond by later bludgeoning her mom with a Baby Birkin bag. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Khloé Kardashian References Her Classic Bentley Feud with Kim Kardashian in a New Video of True," 30 Dec. 2018 Martinez called Velasquez to the apartment, where Wheeler allegedly bludgeoned the 25-year-old woman with a hammer. Katherine Lam, Fox News, "Woman whose body found in bags at NYC parks beaten to death by best friend’s boyfriend, cops say," 30 Aug. 2018 Bruce Harrington, whose brother and sister-in-law were bludgeoned to death by the killer in 1980, threw his weight behind a state ballot initiative, passed in 2004, that requires many criminal offenders to submit their DNA to a state database. James Queally,, "From Golden State Killer to Grim Sleeper, DNA helping break serial killer mysteries from 1970s and 1980s," 29 Apr. 2018 He had been bludgeoned to death, according to the state prosecutor's office, which has not discussed possible motives. Kate Linthicum,, "Another journalist has been killed in Mexico — the sixth this year," 30 May 2018

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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Dictionary Entries near bludgeon






blue acara

blue agave

Statistics for bludgeon

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Time Traveler for bludgeon

The first known use of bludgeon was in 1730

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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

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More from Merriam-Webster on bludgeon

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with bludgeon

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for bludgeon

Spanish Central: Translation of bludgeon

Nglish: Translation of bludgeon for Spanish Speakers

Comments on bludgeon

What made you want to look up bludgeon? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


of or relating to a parable or parabola

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