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

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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


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!


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
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

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 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 Trump’s insistence that his harangues over paltry defense spending by NATO’s European members have already paid off has some justification. Karen Deyoung, Washington Post, "In Trump, some fear the end of the world order," 8 June 2018 Democrats and centrist Republicans from swing districts say the GOP could suffer because the party, steered by Trump's anti-immigrant harangues, could be alienating pivotal moderate voters. Alan Fram And Lisa Mascaro, chicagotribune.com, "Far-reaching Republican immigration bill careening toward likely House rejection," 27 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Less than two weeks later, the New York Legislature voted to remove the religious exemption, after a contentious debate during which anti-vaxxers harangued from the galleries. Nick Paumgarten, The New Yorker, "The Message of Measles," 26 Aug. 2019 The game centers on a young woman named Kay who traverses a strange world overrun by the sea as she is harassed and harangued by monstrous creatures that question her self-worth and fortitude. Patrick Shanley, The Hollywood Reporter, "How a Turbulent Relationship and Professional Ennui Inspired Indie Game 'Sea of Solitude'," 16 July 2019 Trump has repeatedly insulted, harangued, and threatened foreign leaders. Heather Timmons, Quartz, "The Mexico deal is a triumph of Trump’s “speak loudly, carry tiny stick” diplomacy," 11 June 2019 Meanwhile President Donald Trump is trying to harangue the Fed into a more accommodative monetary policy in the run-up to next year’s elections. The Economist, "The global economy is on a knife-edge," 27 June 2019 During her Senate race that year, hecklers at campaign events harangued her about the issue, and staffers for Scott Brown were caught on camera mocking Warren by making tomahawk gestures. Sheelah Kolhatkar, The New Yorker, "Can Elizabeth Warren Win It All?," 14 June 2019 On May 18, hard-line Premier Li Peng harangued Wuer and other student leaders in a dramatic showdown on national television. Robyn Dixon, latimes.com, "30 years ago a Chinese tank column stopped for ‘Tank Man.’ Fang Zheng wasn’t so lucky," 3 June 2019 Some members in the audience harangued Futuyma a bit. Quanta Magazine, "Scientists Seek to Update Evolution," 22 Nov. 2016 Privacy advocates, meanwhile, have harangued the company for automatically sharing information about Venmo users’ transactions publicly. Peter Rudegeair, WSJ, "Venmo Looks to New Leader to Overcome ‘Growing Pains’," 22 Sep. 2018

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.

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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

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Dictionary Entries near harangue

Harald V







Statistics for harangue

Last Updated

19 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for harangue

The first known use of harangue was circa 1533

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More Definitions for harangue



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

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More from Merriam-Webster on harangue

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with harangue

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for 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).


ancient or antiquated

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