convulse

verb
con·​vulse | \ kən-ˈvəls How to pronounce convulse (audio) \
convulsed; convulsing

Definition of convulse

transitive verb

: to shake or agitate violently especially : to shake with or as if with irregular spasms was convulsed with laughter

intransitive verb

: to become affected with convulsions

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Synonyms for convulse

Synonyms

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Choose the Right Synonym for convulse

shake, agitate, rock, convulse mean to move up and down or to and fro with some violence. shake often carries a further implication of a particular purpose. shake well before using agitate suggests a violent and prolonged tossing or stirring. an ocean agitated by storms rock suggests a swinging or swaying motion resulting from violent impact or upheaval. the whole city was rocked by the explosion convulse suggests a violent pulling or wrenching as of a body in a paroxysm. spectators were convulsed with laughter

Examples of convulse in a Sentence

The patient reacted to the medication and began convulsing. The country was convulsed by war.
Recent Examples on the Web Volcanoes usually twitch and convulse before an eruption, but some dangerous phenomena give no discernible fanfare. New York Times, "Life and Death on the Lighthouse of the Mediterranean," 18 Mar. 2021 President Donald Trump will make his case for another four years in the White House tonight, a finale to this week’s Republican National Convention, as a deadly pandemic ebbs and flows in this country and communities convulse over racial injustice. Lisa Donovan, chicagotribune.com, "The Spin: Anticipating Trump’s fiery GOP convention finale | Lightfoot takes next step toward Chicago casino | Exelon to close 2 power plants," 27 Aug. 2020 Even before Babe Ruth reached the Red Sox spring training camp in Hot Springs, Arkansas, and took his first tentative steps toward revolutionizing the game of baseball, the influenza virus destined to convulse the world lurked nearby. Randy Roberts And Johnny Smith, Smithsonian Magazine, "When Babe Ruth and the Great Influenza Gripped Boston," 30 Apr. 2020 Dancing to both albums alone in quarantine — while the streets outside convulse in protest — feels invigorating, sobering, ecstatic and strange. Washington Post, "A new generation of black artists are reclaiming the roots of techno music," 8 July 2020 The officer who chased him, named as De’joure Marquise Mercer in the lawsuit, fired his taser at Reed, the lawsuit said, and Reed began to convulse on the ground. Josiah Bates, Time, "Family of Dreasjon Reed, Black Man Killed by Indianapolis Police Officer, File Lawsuit Against City's Police Department," 16 June 2020 But as the city and nation continue to convulse with grief and rage over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody, some local leaders see another historic turning point in the long struggle for civil rights. Brian Chasnoff, ExpressNews.com, "Protests could be ‘watershed’ moment in civil rights," 7 June 2020 As American cities convulse with protests, U.S. adversaries are taking advantage of the situation on social media to advance their agendas and rebuke U.S. government officials, according to a report released Wednesday. Alyza Sebenius, Bloomberg.com, "Iran, China Use Twitter to Bash U.S. for Protest Hypocrisy," 3 June 2020 Our country has been convulsed by protests of racial injustice and police brutality in recent weeks. oregonlive, "Raevyn Rogers talks about having a cop level a gun at her in her apartment: Oregon track & field rundown," 10 June 2020

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

1614, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for convulse

Latin convulsus, past participle of convellere to pluck up, convulse, from com- + vellere to pluck — more at vulnerable

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Time Traveler for convulse

Time Traveler

The first known use of convulse was in 1614

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Statistics for convulse

Last Updated

7 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Convulse.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/convulse. Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for convulse

convulse

verb

English Language Learners Definition of convulse

medical : to have an experience in which the muscles in your body shake in a sudden violent way that you are not able to control : to experience convulsions
formal : to affect (someone or something) suddenly and violently

convulse

verb
con·​vulse | \ kən-ˈvəls How to pronounce convulse (audio) \
convulsed; convulsing

Kids Definition of convulse

: to shake violently or with jerky motions I convulsed with laughter.

convulse

verb
con·​vulse | \ kən-ˈvəls How to pronounce convulse (audio) \
convulsed; convulsing

Medical Definition of convulse

transitive verb

: to shake or agitate violently especially : to shake or cause to shake with or as if with irregular spasms was convulsed with pain

intransitive verb

: to become affected with convulsions some children will inevitably convulse when fever reaches a high point— H. R. Litchfield & L. H. Dembo

Comments on convulse

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