loathe

verb
\ ˈlōt͟h How to pronounce loathe (audio) \
loathed; loathing

Definition of loathe

transitive verb

: to dislike greatly and often with disgust or intolerance : detest

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Other Words from loathe

loather noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for loathe

Synonyms

abhor, abominate, despise, detest, execrate, hate

Antonyms

love

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Choose the Right Synonym for loathe

hate, detest, abhor, abominate, loathe mean to feel strong aversion or intense dislike for. hate implies an emotional aversion often coupled with enmity or malice. hated the enemy with a passion detest suggests violent antipathy. detests cowards abhor implies a deep often shuddering repugnance. a crime abhorred by all abominate suggests strong detestation and often moral condemnation. abominates all forms of violence loathe implies utter disgust and intolerance. loathed the mere sight of them

Loath vs. Loathe

Many usage commentators point out that the spelling of loath the adjective is distinct from loathe, the verb that means "to dislike greatly." Merriam-Webster dictionaries record loathe (along with loth) as a variant spelling for the adjective, at the same time indicating that the spelling with an e is not as common as the form without it. Both words hark back to Old English, and the e ending in each has come and gone over the centuries - but if you want to avoid the ire of those who like to keep the language tidy, stick with loath for the adjective and loathe for the verb.

Examples of loathe in a Sentence

In fact, he was an energetic walker his whole life, but he loathed fresh-air fiends and he was rather stuck on the idea of being dissolute. — Paul Theroux, New York Times Book Review, 21 Apr. 1991 How I loathed the look of that type on my pages! Everything I wrote seemed, in that type, arrhythmic, dull, stupid. — Joseph Epstein, The Middle of My Tether, 1983 I loathed the job so much that I did it quickly, urgently, almost violently. — W. P. Kinsella, Shoeless Joe, 1982 Pushing the table from him while he spoke, as though he loathed the sight of food, he encountered the watch: the hands of which were almost upon noon. — Charles Dickens, Nicholas Nickleby, 1839 They were rivals who truly loathed each other. I loathe having to do this. It was a habit his wife loathed.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Everyone loathes the corruption and the constant catering to the rich and powerful. Cenk Uygur, Twin Cities, "Cenk Uygur: Brace for impact, Washington. Progressives are going to win.," 31 Aug. 2019 Sterling was almost universally loathed in the Association. Gary Peterson, The Mercury News, "The day the Warriors almost boycotted a playoff game and wound up building a better NBA," 21 Aug. 2019 Fast forward four years and Icardi is loathed by the Nerazzurri fans, while the Inter hierarchy have grown fed up with him, stripping him off his captaincy and trying to force him out of the club. SI.com, "Why Signing Mauro Icardi Is a Risk Not Worth Taking for Europe's Top Clubs," 4 Aug. 2019 For exactly the same reason, Boris is deeply disliked — loathed, despised, horribly murdered in their dreams — by Remainers everywhere. John O'sullivan, National Review, "Can Anyone Beat Boris?," 9 July 2019 Heroic battles won and lost, monarchs lauded and loathed, fairies appeased and monsters imagined—such stories burst from Scotland’s seams, waiting to intrigue and enchant every visitor. Sarah Christensen, National Geographic, "Scotland: Land of Legends," 31 May 2019 Few American diplomats have been so royally and unabashedly loathed as Richard Holbrooke. David Rieff, Harper's magazine, "An American in the Treetops," 19 Aug. 2019 The Coast Guard and Cleveland Police are loathe to patrol the river, since their boats might get stuck behind the bridge when there’s an emergency in the lake. Laura Johnston, cleveland.com, "Norfolk Southern railroad bridge defaults to up position over Cuyahoga River," 23 July 2019 While détente with the Soviets had prominent advocates in both parties, the Soviet regime was loathed by a broad cross-section of Americans in a way Xi’s regime is not. Jonathan S. Tobin, National Review, "Don’t Dismiss Communist China’s Critics," 23 July 2019

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

12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for loathe

Middle English lothen, from Old English lāthian to dislike, be hateful, from lāth

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Learn More about loathe

Dictionary Entries near loathe

Loasaceae

loasa family

loath

loathe

loathful

loathing

loathingly

Statistics for loathe

Last Updated

11 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for loathe

The first known use of loathe was in the 12th century

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More Definitions for loathe

loathe

verb

English Language Learners Definition of loathe

: to hate (someone or something) very much

loathe

verb
\ ˈlōt͟h How to pronounce loathe (audio) \
loathed; loathing

Kids Definition of loathe

: to dislike greatly

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More from Merriam-Webster on loathe

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with loathe

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for loathe

Spanish Central: Translation of loathe

Nglish: Translation of loathe for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of loathe for Arabic Speakers

Comments on loathe

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