self-lac·​er·​a·​tion | \ ˌself-ˌla-sə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce self-laceration (audio) \
plural self-lacerations

Definition of self-laceration

: the act or an instance of lacerating oneself: such as
a : the act or action of cutting or tearing one's own flesh … the self-laceration often results in sustained or permanent visible disfigurements to the body …— Armando Favazza
b : the act or action of rebuking or tormenting oneself Here his self-laceration finds expression in a series of adjectives that come tumbling out …— Harold Bloom

Other Words from self-laceration

self-lacerating \ ˌself-​ˈla-​sə-​ˌrā-​tiŋ How to pronounce self-lacerating (audio) \ adjective
a self-lacerating autobiography his self-lacerating honesty … as she launched an unexpected second career as an acerbic, self-lacerating chronicler of Hollywood excess … — Matt Schudel

First Known Use of self-laceration

1684, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about self-laceration

Time Traveler for self-laceration

Time Traveler

The first known use of self-laceration was in 1684

See more words from the same year

Statistics for self-laceration

Cite this Entry

“Self-laceration.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Aug. 2020.

Comments on self-laceration

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


Test Your Vocabulary

Original Meanings Quiz

  • rembrandt painting a young scholar and his tutor
  • Which of the following is the earliest known sense of the word awe?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!