lam·​baste | \ (ˌ)lam-ˈbāst How to pronounce lambaste (audio) , -ˈbast; ˈlam-ˌbāst, -ˌbast How to pronounce lambaste (audio) \
variants: or lambast
lambasted; lambasting; lambastes or lambasts

Definition of lambaste

transitive verb

1 : to assault violently : beat, whip
2 : to attack verbally : censure critics lambasted his performance

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Did You Know?

The origins of lambaste are somewhat uncertain, but the word was most likely formed by combining the verbs lam and baste, both of which mean "to beat severely." (Incidentally, lambaste can also be spelled lambast, despite the modern spelling of the verb baste.) Some other synonyms of lambaste include pummel, thrash, and pound. Pummel suggests beating with one's fists ("the bully pummeled the smaller child until teachers intervened"). Pound also suggests heavy blows, though perhaps not quite so much as pummel, and may imply a continuous rain of blows ("she pounded on the door"). Thrash means to strike repeatedly and thoroughly as if with a whip ("the boxer thrashed his opponent").

Examples of lambaste in a Sentence

The coach lambasted the team for its poor play. They wrote several letters lambasting the new law.
Recent Examples on the Web Much as his predecessor did, Secretary of State Antony Blinken used the release of the State Department’s annual International Religious Freedom Report to lambaste China for severe restrictions on its citizens’ ability to worship freely. Matthew Lee, ajc, 13 May 2021 Still others cheer on the candidacies of celebrities whose partisan affiliation lines up with their own and lambaste those running on the other side of the aisle. Lauren A. Wright, CNN, 27 Apr. 2021 In the hour-and-forty-five minute video, Mr. DeSantis and the four panelists lambaste the U.S. coronavirus response as excessively draconian and ineffective. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 8 Apr. 2021 Of course, so was Trump’s heavy use of Twitter to lambaste opponents, laud supporters and spread false claims to more than 80 million followers. NBC News, 25 Mar. 2021 Republicans criticized them anyway for lacking border security provisions and used the debate to lambaste Biden, who's ridden a wave of popularity since taking office and winning a massive COVID-19 relief package. Alan Fram, Star Tribune, 19 Mar. 2021 Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, a progressive who until earlier this year would lambaste climate deniers every week from the Senate floor, still seems to prefer a carbon price. Robinson Meyer, The Atlantic, 23 Feb. 2021 The caravan will stop at SAWS headquarters to lambaste rate hikes that will contribute to renters’ inability to stay in their homes and thus create homelessness. Elaine Ayala, San Antonio Express-News, 13 Feb. 2021 Facebook and Twitter accounts that extol Trump and lambaste Democrats as soft on China are highly influential there. Washington Post, 15 Jan. 2021

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

1620, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for lambaste

probably from lam entry 1 + baste

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Time Traveler for lambaste

Time Traveler

The first known use of lambaste was in 1620

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Last Updated

25 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Lambaste.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 13 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for lambaste



English Language Learners Definition of lambaste

: to criticize (someone or something) very harshly


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