re·​volt | \ ri-ˈvōlt How to pronounce revolt (audio) also -ˈvȯlt \
revolted; revolting; revolts

Definition of revolt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to renounce allegiance or subjection (as to a government) : rebel
2a : to experience disgust or shock
b : to turn away with disgust

transitive verb

: to cause to turn away or shrink with disgust or abhorrence



Definition of revolt (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a renouncing of allegiance (as to a government or party) especially : a determined armed uprising
2 : a movement or expression of vigorous dissent

Other Words from revolt


revolter noun

Choose the Right Synonym for revolt


rebellion, revolution, uprising, revolt, insurrection, mutiny mean an outbreak against authority. rebellion implies an open formidable resistance that is often unsuccessful. open rebellion against the officers revolution applies to a successful rebellion resulting in a major change (as in government). a political revolution that toppled the monarchy uprising implies a brief, limited, and often immediately ineffective rebellion. quickly put down the uprising revolt and insurrection imply an armed uprising that quickly fails or succeeds. a revolt by the Young Turks that surprised party leaders an insurrection of oppressed laborers mutiny applies to group insubordination or insurrection especially against naval authority. a mutiny led by the ship's cook

Revolution and Revolt

Revolution and revolt have a shared origin, both ultimately going back to the Latin revolvere “to revolve, roll back.” When revolution first appeared in English in the 14th century, it referred to the movement of a celestial body in orbit; that sense was extended to “a progressive motion of a body around an axis,” “completion of a course,” and other senses suggesting regularity of motion or a predictable return to an original position. At virtually the same time, the word developed a sharply different meaning, namely, ”a sudden radical, or complete change,” apparently from the idea of reversal of direction implicit in the Latin verb. Revolt , which initially meant “to renounce allegiance,” grew from the same idea of “rolling back,” in this case from a prior bond of loyalty.

Examples of revolt in a Sentence

Verb The group threatened to revolt. All the violence revolted me. Noun the revolt of the slaves The peasants' revolt was crushed by the king. The leader of the group called for revolt. Consumers are in revolt against high prices. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb If Russia ever calls NATO’s bluff and invades a member state, the American public may revolt at the prospect of sending troops to die in places that do not threaten the country’s security. Jordan Michael Smith, The New Republic, 13 Apr. 2022 There is no evidence that these officials are opposed to the overall plan, or would revolt against Putin's orders, two of the sources said. Natasha Bertrand, Jim Sciutto And Katie Bo Lillis, CNN, 7 Feb. 2022 At least a dozen Democrats threatened to revolt and paraded in and out of Pelosi's office throughout Wednesday morning and into the afternoon, some noticeably upset and trying to avoid talking to the press. Melanie Zanona, CNN, 9 Mar. 2022 Students revolt while the dean (Brenneman) tries to manage the situation as current and former students (Numrich, Scott and Millan) get caught up in the storm. Chris Gardner, The Hollywood Reporter, 18 Feb. 2022 Assuredly, some drivers would abide, while many others would revolt. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 27 Jan. 2022 D'Arezzo and others warn that shoppers tied to Dollar Tree's $1 image could revolt and a competitor like Dollar General may move to undercut Dollar Tree by selling more stuff for a buck. Nathaniel Meyersohn, CNN, 30 Nov. 2021 Eat too much, and your gut may revolt, sending you to the roadside (or trailside) privy. Patrick Wilson, Outside Online, 24 July 2020 Some have dubbed this worker revolt the Great Resignation; others, Striketober. Laurent Belsie, The Christian Science Monitor, 2 Nov. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The scene was captured by an AP and a few other photojournalists and had been reenacted by Ramos each year during the anniversary of the revolt, until age and his failing health prevented him from showing up. Jim Gomez, ajc, 31 July 2022 His killing, in 1931, not far from Lusanga, sparked a revolt of the Pende people, hundreds of whom were subsequently killed by gunfire. Alice Gregory, The New Yorker, 18 July 2022 For some, the Capitol attack was a kind of Christian revolt. Washington Post, 23 Mar. 2022 The popular narrative that quickly formed about the GameStop mania of 2021 was a David vs. Goliath story: a populist revolt of day-traders against the establishment. Jon Sarlin, CNN, 1 Feb. 2022 The very idea harkens back to the revolt of the English Church. Michael Brendan Dougherty, National Review, 2 July 2021 It’s the revolt of red California against the state’s blue political and cultural establishments. Mark Z. Barabak, Los Angeles Times, 13 Apr. 2021 Years of rank-and-file frustration with Lane Kirkland, president of the A.F.L.-C.I.O. since 1979, boiled over in a revolt of union presidents in 1995. New York Times, 2 Feb. 2021 The revolt started at the end of June at a China Evergrande Group project in Jingdezhen, a city in south-central China’s Jiangxi province, where frustrated home buyers threatened to renege on mortgages on unfinished properties. Cao Li, WSJ, 31 July 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'revolt.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of revolt


1539, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1560, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for revolt


borrowed from Middle French revolter, as reflexive se revolter "to turn about, change sides, turn away (from a belief, adherence), rebel," borrowed from Italian revoltare, revottare (later rivoltare) "to turn over, turn inside out, cause to rebel, disgust," from re- re- + voltare "to turn," going back to Vulgar Latin *volvitāre, iterative of Latin volvere "to set in a circular course, cause to roll, bring round" — more at wallow entry 1


borrowed from Middle French revolte, noun derivative of revolter, as reflexive se revolter "to turn about, change sides, turn away (from a belief, adherence), rebel" — more at revolt entry 1

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Cite this Entry

“Revolt.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for revolt


re·​volt | \ ri-ˈvōlt How to pronounce revolt (audio) \
revolted; revolting

Kids Definition of revolt

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to rebel against a ruler or government
2 : to be or cause to be disgusted or shocked I was revolted by the smell.



Kids Definition of revolt (Entry 2 of 2)

: violent action against a ruler or government : rebellion

More from Merriam-Webster on revolt

Nglish: Translation of revolt for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of revolt for Arabic Speakers


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