gor·​gon·​ize ˈgȯr-gə-ˌnīz How to pronounce gorgonize (audio)
gorgonized; gorgonizing

transitive verb

: to have a paralyzing or mesmerizing effect on : stupefy, petrify

Did you know?

In Greek mythology, the Gorgons (from the Greek adjective gorgos, meaning "terrifying") were commonly depicted as three female monsters who had snakes for hair and the ability to turn anyone who looked at them into stone. The most notorious of the three was Medusa; when she was slain by the hero Perseus, her severed head retained the power of turning anyone who looked on it to stone. In modern parlance, to gorgonize someone is to make him or her feel (metaphorically) petrified, usually through an intimidating glance or gaze.

Word History

First Known Use

1609, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of gorgonize was in 1609


Dictionary Entries Near gorgonize

Cite this Entry

“Gorgonize.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gorgonize. Accessed 19 Apr. 2024.

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