brutality

noun
bru·​tal·​i·​ty | \ brü-ˈta-lə-tē How to pronounce brutality (audio) \
plural brutalities

Definition of brutality

1 : the quality or state of being brutal
2 : a brutal act or course of action

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Examples of brutality in a Sentence

the brutalities of a prison the police were accused of brutality for using excessive force in making arrests

Recent Examples on the Web

Under this definition, African-American voters demanding action on police brutality is identity politics. Ezra Klein, Vox, "How identity politics elected Donald Trump," 5 Nov. 2018 His brutality often included public beheadings, often of police officers. Amir Shah, BostonGlobe.com, "US drone kills Pakistan Taliban chief, Afghan official says," 15 June 2018 By the fifth week of the nanny trial, the brutality had become tedious. Maureen O'connor, The Cut, "What’s Left to Learn From the Horror of the Nanny Trial?," 26 Mar. 2018 That segment of the marathon is renowned for its brutality. John Henry, star-telegram, "Here are the best places to run in Fort Worth," 20 Feb. 2018 The betterment of our people will resonate with us all, but that also means that the brutality against our people connects us. Briana Lawrence, The Root, "Can't We All Just Get Along? Black Panther Is Revisionist History," 19 Feb. 2018 Cars crash and characters are repeatedly bonked on the head, every brutality erupting on a canvas that’s studiously devoid of affect. Jeannette Catsoulis, miamiherald, "In ‘Have a Nice Day,’ a follow-the-money tale in China | Miami Herald," 14 Feb. 2018 Kaepernick’s protest was aimed at shining light on police brutality and racial inequality. Lavendrick Smith, charlotteobserver, "NC businessman plans to boycott Super Bowl. He’ll clean veterans’ graves instead.," 27 Jan. 2018 Cars crash and characters are repeatedly bonked on the head, every brutality erupting on a canvas that’s studiously devoid of affect. Jeannette Catsoulis, New York Times, "Review: In ‘Have a Nice Day,’ a Follow-the-Money Tale in China," 25 Jan. 2018

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

1550, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Last Updated

15 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for brutality

The first known use of brutality was in 1550

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More Definitions for brutality

brutality

noun

English Language Learners Definition of brutality

: cruel, harsh, and usually violent treatment of another person

brutality

noun
bru·​tal·​i·​ty | \ brü-ˈta-lə-tē How to pronounce brutality (audio) \
plural brutalities

Kids Definition of brutality

1 : the quality of being cruel and harsh … she wept and importuned Heaven with a recital of their brutality.— Jack London, The Call of the Wild
2 : a cruel and harsh act or course of action the brutalities of prison

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