repress

verb (1)
re·​press | \ ri-ˈpres How to pronounce repress (audio) \
repressed; repressing; represses

Definition of repress

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to check by or as if by pressure : curb injustice was repressed
b : to put down by force : subdue repress a disturbance
2a : to hold in by self-control repressed a laugh
b : to prevent the natural or normal expression, activity, or development of repressed her anger
3 : to exclude from consciousness repressed the memory of abuse
4 : to inactivate (a gene or formation of a gene product) by allosteric combination at a DNA binding site

intransitive verb

: to take repressive action

re-press

verb (2)
\ (ˌ)rē-ˈpres How to pronounce re-press (audio) \
re-pressed; re-pressing; re-presses

Definition of re-press (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to press again re-press a record

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Other Words from repress

Verb (1)

repressibility \ ri-​ˌpre-​sə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce re-press (audio) \ noun
repressible \ ri-​ˈpre-​sə-​bəl How to pronounce re-press (audio) \ adjective
repressive \ ri-​ˈpre-​siv How to pronounce re-press (audio) \ adjective
repressively adverb
repressiveness noun

Examples of repress in a Sentence

Verb (1) Religious groups were severely repressed. quickly repressed the rebellion in the provincial city and restored order
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The party has explained its recent, ruthless campaign to repress the Uighurs, a Muslim minority in Xinjiang – a nominally autonomous region in Northwest China – as intended to counteract terrorism and separatism. Mario Poceski, The Conversation, 6 Aug. 2021 Bio’s government has worked on several reforms to the criminal justice system, including the repeal of a law frequently used to repress the media. New York Times, 23 July 2021 The protests became a justification to enact a slew of new laws that continued to repress any form of dissent, creating fear throughout the country. Natalie Gallón And Matt Rivers, CNN, 14 June 2021 President Julius Maada Bio's government has worked on several reforms to the criminal justice system, including the repeal of a law frequently used to repress the media. Ruth Maclean New York Times, Star Tribune, 23 July 2021 The regime cruelly uses its grip on the flow of information to monitor and repress its own citizens. Anthony Man, sun-sentinel.com, 14 July 2021 Try not to judge it, and don't put pressure on yourself to repress it. Zee Krstic, Good Housekeeping, 7 June 2021 Other participants denounced the violations of the rights of the protesters and the use of weapons to repress the demonstrations. The Arizona Republic, 13 May 2021 Many of the justifications police have used since the order are the same as those from before: to repress drug trafficking and execute arrest warrants. Washington Post, 20 May 2021

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

Verb (1)

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Verb (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for repress

Verb (1)

Middle English, from Anglo-French represser, from Latin repressus, past participle of reprimere to check, from re- + premere to press — more at press

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Time Traveler for repress

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near repress

representor

repress

re-press

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Statistics for repress

Last Updated

15 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Repress.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/repress. Accessed 17 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for repress

repress

verb

English Language Learners Definition of repress

: to not allow yourself to do or express (something)
: to not allow yourself to remember (something, such as an unpleasant event)
: to control (someone or something) by force

repress

verb
re·​press | \ ri-ˈpres How to pronounce repress (audio) \
repressed; repressing

Kids Definition of repress

: to hold in check by or as if by pressure On seeing his haircut, I had to repress a laugh.

repress

transitive verb
re·​press | \ ri-ˈpres How to pronounce repress (audio) \

Medical Definition of repress

1 : to exclude from consciousness repress conflicts
2 : to inactivate (a gene or formation of a gene product) by allosteric combination at a DNA binding site

More from Merriam-Webster on repress

Nglish: Translation of repress for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of repress for Arabic Speakers

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