harass

verb
ha·​rass | \ hə-ˈras How to pronounce harass (audio) ; ˈher-əs, ˈha-rəs How to pronounce harass (audio) \
harassed; harassing; harasses

Definition of harass

transitive verb

1a : exhaust, fatigue I have been harassed with the toil of verse— William Wordsworth
b(1) : to annoy persistently was harassing his younger brother
(2) : to create an unpleasant or hostile situation for especially by uninvited and unwelcome verbal or physical conduct was being harassed by her classmates claims that the police were unfairly harassing him
2 : to worry and impede by repeated raids harassed the enemy

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from harass

harasser noun
harassment \ hə-​ˈras-​mənt How to pronounce harassment (audio) ; ˈher-​əs-​ , ˈha-​rəs-​ How to pronounce harassment (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for harass

worry, annoy, harass, harry, plague, pester, tease mean to disturb or irritate by persistent acts. worry implies an incessant goading or attacking that drives one to desperation. pursued a policy of worrying the enemy annoy implies disturbing one's composure or peace of mind by intrusion, interference, or petty attacks. you're doing that just to annoy me harass implies petty persecutions or burdensome demands that exhaust one's nervous or mental power. harassed on all sides by creditors harry may imply heavy oppression or maltreatment. the strikers had been harried by thugs plague implies a painful and persistent affliction. plagued all her life by poverty pester stresses the repetition of petty attacks. constantly pestered with trivial complaints tease suggests an attempt to break down one's resistance or rouse to wrath. children teased the dog

Examples of harass in a Sentence

She was constantly harassed by the other students. He claims that he is being unfairly harassed by the police.

Recent Examples on the Web

Recently, though, Jeremy Renner Official had been overrun by trolls impersonating the actor and harassing other fans. Wired, "Jeremy Renner Just Shut Down His Fan App," 5 Sep. 2019 While fires burn in the Amazon and Hurricane Dorian harasses Florida, a pilgrimage focused on caring for creation is a perfect way to recommit ourselves to the care of our common home. ExpressNews.com, "San Antonians can walk a Pilgrimage for Creation this Sunday," 4 Sep. 2019 But Moeller's offense never gained any traction against a stout Irish defense that harassed the yellow and blue on a play-by-play basis. Shelby Dermer, Cincinnati.com, "Todd Naumann's reign at Moeller starts with turnover-filled 28-0 loss to Indianapolis Cathedral," 31 Aug. 2019 The penalty is similar to those for class B and C misdemeanors such as harassing phone calls or electronic messages; disorderly conduct; food stamp fraud of less than $100; and letting a prisoner escape. Chris Foran, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Wisconsin banned selling yellow margarine for 72 years, so residents smuggled it in from Illinois," 28 Aug. 2019 The United States therefore strongly opposes any efforts by China to threaten or coerce partner countries into withholding cooperation with non-Chinese firms, or otherwise harassing their cooperative activities. Steve Mollman, Quartz, "The US says China is blocking $2.5 trillion in South China Sea oil and gas," 25 Aug. 2019 Spurred on by incendiary reports in the press, vigilantes have attacked camps and harassed Syrians in the streets. The Economist, "Politicians are stoking anti-refugee sentiment in Lebanon," 22 Aug. 2019 Brackin and others also dispute the characterization that opponents have bullied or harassed anyone. Trisha Powell Crain | Tcrain@al.com, al.com, "Rural charter school stokes religious fears, roils community in Alabama," 21 July 2019 Mykal McEldowney, IndyStar The product delivery branch of Fair Oaks Farms is suspending service for a week to help with the implementation of new policies, training and to protect delivery service drivers who have been harassed. Natalia E. Contreras, Indianapolis Star, "Fair Oaks Farms suspends home delivery service in wake of animal abuse videos," 9 June 2019

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

1617, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for harass

French harasser, from Middle French, from harer to set a dog on, from Old French hare, interjection used to incite dogs, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German hier here — more at here

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about harass

Dictionary Entries near harass

Harare

Harari

haras

harass

harassedly

harassing fire

harassingly

Statistics for harass

Last Updated

9 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for harass

The first known use of harass was in 1617

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for harass

harass

verb

English Language Learners Definition of harass

: to annoy or bother (someone) in a constant or repeated way
: to make repeated attacks against (an enemy)

harass

verb
ha·​rass | \ hə-ˈras How to pronounce harass (audio) , ˈher-əs\
harassed; harassing

Kids Definition of harass

1 : to annoy again and again
2 : to make repeated attacks against an enemy

Other Words from harass

harassment \ -​mənt \ noun
ha·​rass | \ hə-ˈras, ˈhar-əs How to pronounce harass (audio) \

Legal Definition of harass

: to subject persistently and wrongfully to annoying, offensive, or troubling behavior a collection agency harassing a debtor — see also sexual harassment

Other Words from harass

harasser noun
harassment noun

History and Etymology for harass

Middle French harasser to exhaust, fatigue, from harer to set a dog on, from Old French hare, interjection used to incite dogs

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on harass

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with harass

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for harass

Spanish Central: Translation of harass

Nglish: Translation of harass for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of harass for Arabic Speakers

Comments on harass

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

WORD OF THE DAY

concealment of treason or felony

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Word Winder's CrossWinder

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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