ex·​or·​cise | \ ˈek-ˌsȯr-ˌsīz How to pronounce exorcise (audio) , -sər- \
variants: or less commonly exorcize
exorcised also exorcized; exorcising also exorcizing

Definition of exorcise

transitive verb

1a : to expel (an evil spirit) by adjuration
b : to get rid of (something troublesome, menacing, or oppressive)
2 : to free of an evil spirit

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Other Words from exorcise

exorciser noun

Examples of exorcise in a Sentence

The movie is about a priest who tries to exorcise demons from a young girl. please exorcise that offensive word from your vocabulary
Recent Examples on the Web And in their telling offer a therapeutic vehicle for exorcising the terror and fear that gripped people during the storm’s worst periods—a storm that swirled above them for two whole nerve-wracking days. Richard Kurin, Smithsonian, "Rescuing Bahamian Culture," 1 Sep. 2019 Cristobal’s program has already exorcised a couple of demons this season, beating Stanford and winning at Washington. John Canzano | The Oregonian/oregonlive, oregonlive, "Canzano: Oregon Ducks get an uplifting win and get Mike Leach off their back," 27 Oct. 2019 Although Anderson exorcised a lot of violence, one absurdly grotesque shot still made it into the movie: Sam Neill ripping out his own eyeballs, just before dissecting another crew member from stem to stern. Darren Orf, Popular Mechanics, "Ad Astra Is a Great Sci-FI Film, But Event Horizon's Neptunian Journey Is Even Better," 20 Sep. 2019 Under Pavelski, the Sharks exorcised their many playoff demons, reached the Final, and were annual contenders for the Cup. Garrett Wroblewski/guest Columnist, The Mercury News, "With Pavelski gone, who will lead Sharks into new season and era?," 20 Aug. 2019 The Astros annihilated the Angels, 11-2, exorcising any sort of lingering animosity from Tuesday's theatrics. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Astros bounce back, blast Angels," 18 July 2019 Eleven appears to be able to exorcise, or at least temporarily deactivate, the Mind Flayer from Billy (Dacre Montgomery) by reminding him of his childhood memories as a young surfer with his mom. Time, "Let's Discuss the 10 Big Questions We Have After Binging Stranger Things Season 3," 4 July 2019 Tuesday was a time to exorcise wretched memories made across his otherwise magnificent career. Chandler Rome, Houston Chronicle, "Justin Verlander shines as Astros shut out Indians," 30 July 2019 Then came Game 7, when Kawhi Leonard exorcised 20 years worth of playoff ghosts. Andrew Sharp, SI.com, "With Klay Thompson Sidelined, The Raptors Had All the Answers in Game 3 of NBA Finals," 6 June 2019

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

1539, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for exorcise

Middle English, from Anglo-French exorciscer, from Late Latin exorcizare, from Greek exorkizein, from ex- + horkizein to bind by oath, adjure, from horkos oath

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Time Traveler for exorcise

Time Traveler

The first known use of exorcise was in 1539

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Statistics for exorcise

Last Updated

29 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Exorcise.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/exorcize. Accessed 9 December 2019.

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More Definitions for exorcise


How to pronounce exorcise (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of exorcise

: to force (an evil spirit) to leave

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More from Merriam-Webster on exorcise

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for exorcise

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with exorcise

Spanish Central: Translation of exorcise

Nglish: Translation of exorcise for Spanish Speakers

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