repress

verb (1)
re·press | \ ri-ˈpres \
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 \
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 \ noun
repressible \ri-ˈpre-sə-bəl \ adjective
repressive \ri-ˈpre-siv \ 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 brigades were organized along paramilitary lines and have been frequently deployed by the government to repress the dissident Ladies in White and other opposition groups. Nora Gámez Torres, miamiherald, "He now hunts Cuban human-rights abusers in the U.S. Was he once an offender himself?," 12 July 2018 All of the smaller characters might have been repressed a little bit. Yvonne Villarreal, Detroit Free Press, "Amy Adams wields ‘Sharp Objects’ in new HBO thriller," 6 July 2018 One of the paradoxes of Iran in the Middle Eastern context is that most Middle Eastern governments are ruled by secular autocrats who are repressing primarily Islamist opposition. Isaac Chotiner, Slate Magazine, "What Is Fueling the Protests in Iran?," 1 Jan. 2018 All of the smaller characters might have been repressed a little bit. Yvonne Villarreal, Detroit Free Press, "Amy Adams wields ‘Sharp Objects’ in new HBO thriller," 6 July 2018 With the death of Spain’s dictator Francisco Franco in 1975, Occitan speakers began to feel pride, rather than shame, in their language that the government had actively repressed for decades. Adam Cohen, Smithsonian, "This Musician’s Songs Give Powerful Voice to a Language in Crisis," 3 July 2018 From 1929 to 2000, Mexico was ruled by a single party, the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), and during much of that period the government played a major role in the economy and repressed the opposition. Kevin Sieff, Washington Post, "The story must be told.," 20 June 2018 All of the smaller characters might have been repressed a little bit. Yvonne Villarreal, Detroit Free Press, "Amy Adams wields ‘Sharp Objects’ in new HBO thriller," 6 July 2018 The Golden Triangle is a smuggling center, and a sanctuary for members of various ethnic militias that have spent decades pushing for autonomy from a government in Myanmar that routinely represses them. Hannah Beech, The Seattle Times, "For some Thai soccer-team members, cave ordeal was only their latest test," 10 July 2018

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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Statistics for repress

Last Updated

30 Aug 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for repress

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

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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 \
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 \

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

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Comments on repress

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