de·​stroy·​er | \ di-ˈstrȯi(-ə)r How to pronounce destroyer (audio) , dē-\

Definition of destroyer

1 : one that destroys
2 : a small fast warship used especially to support larger vessels and usually armed with guns, depth charges, torpedoes, and often guided missiles

Examples of destroyer in a Sentence

The pamphlet describes alcohol as a destroyer of families.

Recent Examples on the Web

Tom proudly served in the United States Navy during WWII aboard the destroyer USS Yosemite., "Thomas Paul Rostek," 27 Aug. 2019 With Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and George Springer back and Yordan Alvarez up, the lineup is a destroyer from top to bottom. Jon Tayler,, "Biggest Questions Remaining After the MLB Trade Deadline," 1 Aug. 2019 This is a meat grinder of a job, a destroyer of reputations, a graveyard of bold plans and high hopes. Peter Rowe,, "Cindy Marten's fortune: leading San Diego Unified forward while suffering personal setbacks," 24 June 2018 Two Royal Navy warships are currently in the region, the frigate HMS Montrose and the destroyer HMS Duncan. Amir Vahdat,, "UK joins US Strait of Hormuz mission; Iran slams sanctions," 5 Aug. 2019 Ring is a destroyer that controls the midfield in front of the back four. Jamie Goldberg,, "Portland Timbers vs. NYCFC: Players to watch, TV channel, how to watch live stream online," 5 July 2019 Hayes will help solve that issue, allowing Williamson to thrive as a passing lane destroyer and elite defensive centerfielder. Michael Shapiro,, "Zion Mania in Full Effect as Pelicans Kick Off New Era," 20 June 2019 Most of the existential threats that companies face aren’t quite as tangible as a Russian destroyer bearing down. Sam Walker, WSJ, "In Menacing Seas, the Navy Relies on ‘Battle Rhythm’," 15 June 2019 The Babylonian Talmud has the destroyer of the Jerusalem Temple, Roman general Titus, burned to ashes, reconstituted, and burned again, forever. Stephen Greenblatt, The New York Review of Books, "Not To Worry," 17 Jan. 2019

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for destroyer

Last Updated

2 Sep 2019

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Time Traveler for destroyer

The first known use of destroyer was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for destroyer



English Language Learners Definition of destroyer

: a small and fast military ship that protects bigger ships
: something that causes the destruction of something


de·​stroy·​er | \ di-ˈstrȯi-ər How to pronounce destroyer (audio) \

Kids Definition of destroyer

1 : someone or something that ruins or ends something
2 : a small fast warship armed with guns, torpedoes, and sometimes missiles

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More from Merriam-Webster on destroyer

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with destroyer

Spanish Central: Translation of destroyer

Nglish: Translation of destroyer for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of destroyer for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about destroyer

Comments on destroyer

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


miscellaneous remnants or debris

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