reign of terror

noun phrase

Definition of reign of terror

: a state or a period of time marked by violence often committed by those in power that produces widespread terror

First Known Use of reign of terror

1784, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for reign of terror

Reign of Terror, a period of the French Revolution that was conspicuous for mass executions of political suspects

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The first known use of reign of terror was in 1784

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Cite this Entry

“Reign of terror.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 12 December 2019.

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reign of terror


English Language Learners Definition of reign of terror

: a period during which a person or group commits violent acts against many people and causes a lot of fear

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a period of high artistic development

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