pes·​ter | \ ˈpe-stər How to pronounce pester (audio) \
pestered; pestering\ ˈpe-​st(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce pester (audio) \

Definition of pester

transitive verb

1 obsolete : overcrowd
2 : to harass with petty irritations : annoy

Choose the Right Synonym for pester

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 pester in a Sentence

Leave me alone! Stop pestering me! one resident pestered the condo board about every little thing
Recent Examples on the Web Through Tonight: Showers and possibly more than one thunderstorm could pester us into the early morning hours. Washington Post, 1 May 2022 The Cavs didn’t have Allen to pester reigning MVP Jokic like the first matchup in Denver. Chris Fedor, cleveland, 19 Mar. 2022 Mazzetti eventually left the coffee shop, but O'Keefe followed him with a film crew and continued to pester him. Oliver Darcy, CNN, 11 Mar. 2022 If anything, the feature above might give scammers a whole new way to pester iPhone users. Yoni Heisler, BGR, 28 Jan. 2022 All the Way, a Netflix Christmas rom-com about Peter (Michael Urie), who brings his best Nick (Philemon Chambers) home for the holidays as his boyfriend so his family doesn't pester him about being single. Greta Bjornson,, 24 Dec. 2021 Tight supplies, higher prices and limited selections are likely to continue to pester the market, dealers and economists say. David Lyons,, 6 Nov. 2021 Triad stayed on a path toward the state title by sticking to its game plan, relying on senior defender Roger Weber to pester Marynevych throughout the 80 minutes. Bob Narang,, 5 Nov. 2021 Temper your urge to pester someone unwittingly and don't blast them with messages, emails and outreaches. Dave Wendland, Forbes, 4 Oct. 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pester.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of pester

1548, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for pester

modification of Middle French empestrer to hobble, embarrass, from Vulgar Latin *impastoriare, from Latin in- + Late Latin pastoria tether — more at pastern

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Last Updated

5 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pester.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for pester


pes·​ter | \ ˈpe-stər How to pronounce pester (audio) \
pestered; pestering

Kids Definition of pester

: to bother again and again

More from Merriam-Webster on pester

Nglish: Translation of pester for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of pester for Arabic Speakers


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