re·​pressed | \ ri-ˈprest How to pronounce repressed (audio) \

Definition of repressed

1 : subjected to or marked by repression
2 : characterized by restraint

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Examples of repressed in a Sentence

a 19th-century church in the repressed style favored by the strict religious sect

Recent Examples on the Web

The scandals in the governor’s mansion triggered an explosion of repressed rage not seen here since 1999, when errant bombs killed a man in Vieques — an island community to the east of Puerto Rico’s main territory. Washington Post, "Puerto Rico has turned on its governor as deep unrest reaches the surface," 21 July 2019 The new production emphasizes the repressed three-way subtext between Laurey, Curly, and Jud in a number of ways. Aja Romano, Vox, "The new Oklahoma! is a sexy, shocking revival for our times," 2 July 2019 But blindly accepting American propaganda about the revolutionary government obscured the real, if limited, grassroots democratic advances and efforts to improve the quality of formerly impoverished and violently repressed lives. Jeffrey L. Gould, The New Republic, "Making Sense of Bernie’s Sandinista Sympathies," 6 June 2019 Especially people who haven't necessarily considered what their style might be, who felt kind of repressed. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, "Orlando Soria's Unspouse My House Is Your Newest HGTV Obsession," 6 June 2019 As a young woman, I was drawn to female characters whose repressed anger fermented into a melancholy that made them feel unreal, ghostly. Longreads, "Demonology: A Woman’s Right to Fury," 10 June 2019 The former army officer restricted the media and repressed opponents. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Downfall of a Dictator," 11 Apr. 2019 Social media is an opportunity in repressed societies. Eric Johnson, Recode, "Full Q&A: NBC journalists Chuck Todd, Andrea Mitchell and Hallie Jackson on Recode Decode," 5 Dec. 2018 Another suggested that my cancer was the result of a repressed trauma. Assia Grazioli-venier, Harper's BAZAAR, "I Was Diagnosed With Breast Cancer at Age 35," 8 Oct. 2018

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

1606, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for repressed

Last Updated

18 Aug 2019

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Time Traveler for repressed

The first known use of repressed was in 1606

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More Definitions for repressed



English Language Learners Definition of repressed

: stopped from being expressed or remembered
: having feelings or desires that are not allowed to be expressed
: kept under control by force


re·​pressed | \ ri-ˈprest How to pronounce repressed (audio) \

Medical Definition of repressed

: subjected to or marked by repression a repressed child repressed anger

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Comments on repressed

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


to spread over or through

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