hu·​mil·​i·​ate | \ hyü-ˈmi-lē-ˌāt How to pronounce humiliate (audio) , yü- \
humiliated; humiliating

Definition of humiliate

transitive verb

: to reduce (someone) to a lower position in one's own eyes or others' eyes : to make (someone) ashamed or embarrassed : mortify hoped they wouldn't humiliate themselves in their next game accused her of humiliating him in public feel so humiliated

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Other Words from humiliate

humiliation \ hyü-​ˌmi-​lē-​ˈā-​shən How to pronounce humiliate (audio) , yü-​ \ noun

Examples of humiliate in a Sentence

I hope I don't humiliate myself during the presentation. He accused her of trying to humiliate him in public. She was hurt and deeply humiliated by the lies he told about her.
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Recent Examples on the Web Did the advancing Allies want to humiliate the Germans? Maryn Mckenna, Wired, "Yes to Masks. No to Parties. 2021 Will Be a Lot Like 2020," 31 Dec. 2020 Who was the first opponent to humiliate you as a pro rookie? Andrew Greif, Los Angeles Times, "These former Clippers might be ‘Knuckleheads,’ but people listen," 2 Dec. 2020 In an era flooded with blatantly propagandistic docs, With Drawn Arms may be the most outrageous because the filmmakers humiliate their subject in the process of using him as a foil. Armond White, National Review, "With Drawn Arms Presents a BLM Puppet Show," 16 Dec. 2020 How many times does Loeffler, who is anti-Black Lives Matter in a Black Lives Matter city and league, have to humiliate the WNBA before the league takes action against her? Mike Freeman, USA TODAY, "Opinion: Kelly Loeffler continues to embarrass the WNBA. When will the league stop her?," 16 Dec. 2020 Employees variously dance, weep, guzzle booze, slump at a desk, interact collegially or creepily, and otherwise humiliate themselves for our voyeuristic amusement. Los Angeles Times, "Review: The hidden truth of LACMA’s Alex Prager show may drive you to drink," 1 Dec. 2020 Such a confrontation in the Senate could humiliate the Emiratis and make a dramatic display of friction within the U.S.-led coalition in the Middle East. Joel Gehrke, Washington Examiner, "Senate rebellion brewing against post-Abraham Accord F-35 deal with UAE," 8 Dec. 2020 Leaving now, especially as Iran and Russia are champing at the bit to humiliate the U.S., would be to give away a huge strategic piece of real estate unnecessarily. Seth J. Frantzman, National Review, "America Needs a Syria Policy," 15 Nov. 2020 This season, however, there were numerous challenges that felt almost sadistic — as if they had been designed to humiliate and stress out the bakers as much as test their skills in the kitchen. Meredith Blake, Los Angeles Times, "‘Great British Baking Show’ 2020: We break down the season finale, snubs and surprises," 27 Nov. 2020

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

circa 1534, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for humiliate

Late Latin humiliatus, past participle of humiliare, from Latin humilis low — more at humble

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Time Traveler for humiliate

Time Traveler

The first known use of humiliate was circa 1534

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Statistics for humiliate

Last Updated

16 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Humiliate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for humiliate


How to pronounce humiliate (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of humiliate

: to make (someone) feel very ashamed or foolish


hu·​mil·​i·​ate | \ hyü-ˈmi-lē-ˌāt How to pronounce humiliate (audio) , yü- \
humiliated; humiliating

Kids Definition of humiliate

: to cause (someone) to feel very ashamed or foolish My brother humiliates me with my nickname, Stinky.

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Comments on humiliate

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