\ ˈrāz How to pronounce raze (audio) \
razed; razing

Definition of raze

transitive verb

1 : to destroy to the ground : demolish raze an old building
2a : to scrape, cut, or shave off
b archaic : erase

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Other Words from raze

razer noun

Examples of raze in a Sentence

an entire city block razed by a terrible fire the developer razed the old school building and built a high-rise condominium complex

Recent Examples on the Web

On June 21, 1959, the Los Angeles Times informed its readers that the building would be razed. Lesley M.m. Blume, Town & Country, "Inside Frank Gehry's Overhaul of Garden of Allah, L.A.’s Most Infamous Corner," 25 Feb. 2019 In Philadelphia, where few incentives exist to encourage developers to preserve properties rather than raze them, many builders prefer to rely on the wrecking ball. Michael Boren, Philly.com, "Protesters rally against planned demolition of historic Bella Vista church," 16 June 2018 It is expected to be the last day of competition held in the 99-year-old stadium before it is razed and reconstructed. Ken Goe, OregonLive.com, "UO women make a last title push at 'historic' Hayward Field: Oregon track & field rundown," 9 June 2018 Parrish expresses his sympathetic view of the Bolsheviks and his feelings about razing a village in his war diary, a copy of which is housed in the Bentley collection. WSJ, "Archangel Endnotes," 9 Nov. 2018 Some hold out hope that Israel might be deterred by an inevitable international outcry over razing the community. Fox News, "Doomed Palestinian village turns to Europe as last hope," 16 Sep. 2018 The Nazis then razed the city and expelled some 500,000 remaining residents, sending some to the Auschwitz death camp. Monika Scislowska, Fox News, "Poland honors fighters, victims of Warsaw's 1944 revolt," 1 Aug. 2018 Separately, rights groups have documented more than 300 Rohingya villages in northern Rakhine that were razed by fire since last August. Hannah Beech And Saw Nang, New York Times, "Myanmar Rejects U.N. Findings: ‘No Ethnic Cleansing or Genocide in Our Country’," 14 Mar. 2018 That office was in one of the buildings that was razed to make room for the Convention Center, which opened in 1993. Bonnie L. Cook, Philly.com, "David Peltan, 97, Philly optometrist who loved history," 5 Mar. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for raze

alteration of rase

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Dictionary Entries near raze

ray parenchyma


ray tracheid





Statistics for raze

Last Updated

9 May 2019

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Time Traveler for raze

The first known use of raze was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for raze



English Language Learners Definition of raze

: to destroy (something, such as a building) completely


\ ˈrāz How to pronounce raze (audio) \
razed; razing

Kids Definition of raze

: to destroy completely by knocking down or breaking to pieces : demolish

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More from Merriam-Webster on raze

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with raze

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for raze

Spanish Central: Translation of raze

Nglish: Translation of raze for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of raze for Arabic Speakers

Comments on raze

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


one that collects or salvages junk

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