ha·​rangue | \ hə-ˈraŋ How to pronounce harangue (audio) \

Definition of harangue

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a speech addressed to a public assembly listening to his capacious harangue and its immaculate delivery— Sir Winston Churchill
2 : a ranting speech or writing emotional and frequently violent harangues— K. E. Read the long, tiresome harangue so characteristic of … books on the subject— J. H. Donnelly
3 : lecture gave me a harangue on the subject of my poor grades


harangued; haranguing

Definition of harangue (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to make a harangue (see harangue entry 1) : declaim poets … and philosophers recited their works, and harangued for diversion— Tobias Smollett

transitive verb

: to address in a harangue haranguing me … on the folly of my ways— Jay Jacobs

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from harangue


haranguer noun

Did You Know?


In Old Italian, the noun "aringo" referred to a public assembly, the verb aringare meant "to speak in public," and the noun "aringa" referred to a public speech. "Aringa" was borrowed into Middle French as arenge, and it is from this form that we get our noun "harangue," which made its first appearance in English in the 16th century. Perhaps due to the bombastic or exasperated nature of some public speeches, the term quickly developed an added sense referring to a speech or writing in the style of a rant (though the word rant is not etymologically related). There is also a verb "harangue," which refers to the act of making such a speech.

Examples of harangue in a Sentence

Noun He delivered a long harangue about the evils of popular culture. launched into a long harangue about poor customer service without realizing that I wasn't even an employee! Verb He harangued us for hours about the evils of popular culture. the eminent professor harangued for three hours on his favorite subject, the clash of East and West
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But his go-back-where-you-came-from harangue tears it for me. Margaret Sullivan, Washington Post, "Tiptoeing around Trump’s racism is a betrayal of journalistic truth-telling," 15 July 2019 Like Blake, Janina sees herself as a prophetic figure and is always ready with an outsider-y harangue. Rachel Riederer, The New Republic, "Olga Tokarczuk’s Gripping Eco-Mystery," 10 Oct. 2019 She was hanged just outside the old jail in Westminster and her restless soul is reported to roam the area and upon occasion attend public meetings and harangue folks incessantly. Kevin Dayhoff, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Dayhoff: Halloween means parade in Westminster, re-telling of ghost stories haunting Carroll County," 18 Oct. 2019 Cycling at predictable intervals between Keith’s long, interior harangues and his brief, prickly interactions with the director, the play acquires a ticktock rhythm that prevents the buildup of momentum. Jesse Green, New York Times, "Review: In ‘American Moor,’ an Insider’s Guide to ‘Othello’," 8 Sep. 2019 When there is a diplomat to harangue in London, Abdelgalil does it. Justin Lynch, The New Republic, "The West’s Complicity in Sudan’s Massacres," 18 June 2019 Photo: Charles Pertwee/Bloomberg NEWS On a recent Wednesday, Mr. Rafizi rolled in to Tangkak, a dusty market town south of the capital, Kuala Lumpur, and launched into an hour-long harangue about Mr. Najib’s leadership. James Hookway, WSJ, "Malaysia Elections: Opposition Seeks to Slay Goliath With Smarter Campaigning," 7 May 2018 Interesting candidates Lindsey harps and harangues about the importance of depth. Don Norcross, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Toreros work on depleted offensive line," 17 Mar. 2018 Let’s set aside complaints about women’s physical voices — such as the prevalence of uptalk or vocal fry — as that’s a harangue for another time. Kory Stamper, The Cut, "The 300-Year History of Using ‘Literally’ Figuratively," 29 Jan. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Here is an excerpt: In a summer 2018 call with Prime Minister Theresa May, Trump harangued the British leader about her country’s contribution to NATO. Jay Nordlinger, National Review, "Men of Kentucky, &c.," 8 Nov. 2019 About three dozen people showed up at last week’s council meeting and spent more than hour haranguing council members during public comment before briefly shutting down the proceeding with a group chant. John Aguilar, The Denver Post, "As hot-button debates rage in Aurora, election remains about bread-and-butter issues," 15 Oct. 2019 Health-care stocks have been under pressure for months as Democrats have proposed aggressive health-care reforms, once-friendly Republicans targeted drug prices, and both parties harangued industry executives in Congressional hearings. Washington Post, "Bernie Sanders, 1; Health Insurers, -$30 Billion," 18 Apr. 2019 During the workweek, the acrid haze of tear gas would clear and life moved on, though the revolutionary graffiti haranguing the Communist Party of China lingered. Laignee Barron/hong Kong, Time, "A Siege in Hong Kong Heralds a New Phase of Protest," 21 Nov. 2019 That’s in stark contrast to Trump’s relationship with his first attorney general, Jeff Sessions, whom the president repeatedly harangued in public. Michael Balsamo, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Trump blurs lines between personal lawyer, attorney general," 29 Sep. 2019 The former prime minister says that he is often harangued in the street by people who blame him for the chaos that the referendum created. The Economist, "David Cameron is Britain’s most disliked politician," 18 Sep. 2019 In a series of conferences in a succession of European palaces, Prime Minister David Lloyd George, Georges Clemenceau of France, Woodrow Wilson and dozens of other leaders conspired, harangued and horse-traded from 1919 to 1921. John Broich, The Conversation, "Why there is no Kurdish nation," 6 Nov. 2019 In a summer 2018 call with Prime Minister Theresa May, Trump harangued the British leader about her country's contribution to NATO. oregonlive, "Trump’s calls with leaders have long troubled aides," 5 Oct. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'harangue.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of harangue


circa 1533, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1640, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for harangue

Noun and Verb

Middle French arenge, from Old Italian aringa, from aringare to speak in public, from aringo public assembly, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German hring ring

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about harangue

Time Traveler for harangue

Time Traveler

The first known use of harangue was circa 1533

See more words from the same year

Listen to Our Podcast about harangue

Statistics for harangue

Last Updated

14 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Harangue.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/harangue. Accessed 24 January 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for harangue


How to pronounce harangue (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of harangue

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a forceful or angry speech



English Language Learners Definition of harangue (Entry 2 of 2)

: to speak to (someone) in a forceful or angry way : to deliver a harangue to (someone)


ha·​rangue | \ hə-ˈraŋ How to pronounce harangue (audio) \

Kids Definition of harangue

: a scolding speech or writing

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on harangue

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for harangue

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with harangue

Spanish Central: Translation of harangue

Nglish: Translation of harangue for Spanish Speakers

Comments on harangue

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


a feeling of well-being or elation

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Intact Latin Quiz

  • roman tablet
  • What did focus mean in Latin?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!