tease

verb
\ ˈtēz How to pronounce tease (audio) \
teased; teasing

Definition of tease

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to make fun of : kid
b : to disturb or annoy by persistent irritating or provoking especially in a petty or mischievous way
c : to annoy with petty persistent requests : pester also : to obtain by repeated coaxing
d : to persuade to acquiesce especially by persistent small efforts : coax
e : to manipulate or influence as if by teasing
2 : to comb (hair) by taking hold of a strand and pushing the short hairs toward the scalp with the comb
3 : to tantalize especially by arousing desire or curiosity often without intending to satisfy it
4a : to disentangle and lay parallel by combing or carding tease wool
b : teasel
5 : to tear in pieces especially : to shred (a tissue or specimen) for microscopic examination

tease

noun

Definition of tease (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of teasing : the state of being teased
2 : one that teases

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Other Words from tease

Verb

teasingly \ ˈtē-​ziŋ-​lē How to pronounce teasingly (audio) \ adverb

Choose the Right Synonym for tease

Verb

worry, annoy, harass, harry, plague, pester, tease mean to disturb or irritate by persistent acts. worry implies an incessant goading or attacking that drives one to desperation. pursued a policy of worrying the enemy annoy implies disturbing one's composure or peace of mind by intrusion, interference, or petty attacks. you're doing that just to annoy me harass implies petty persecutions or burdensome demands that exhaust one's nervous or mental power. harassed on all sides by creditors harry may imply heavy oppression or maltreatment. the strikers had been harried by thugs plague implies a painful and persistent affliction. plagued all her life by poverty pester stresses the repetition of petty attacks. constantly pestered with trivial complaints tease suggests an attempt to break down one's resistance or rouse to wrath. children teased the dog

Examples of tease in a Sentence

Verb He and his wife enjoy teasing each other about their different tastes in music. The other children teased her because she was wearing braces. He was always teased by his brother about being short. Oh, don't get so angry. I was just teasing! The boy's mother told him to stop teasing the dog. Noun a pretty girl who has the reputation of being a bit of a tease The lower rate is just a tease to attract new customers.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb During my visit, Rozman was aided by two cheerful, teasing interns, Francesca DeLuca and Carly Cody; his partner, Manuela Delnevo, came up from Berkeley for the weekend. Rachel Monroe, The New Yorker, "How Natural Wine Became a Symbol of Virtuous Consumption," 18 Nov. 2019 Rodney Hood strolled out of the shower with a toothy grin on his face, teasing reporters about their recent portrayal of his underperforming team. Joe Freeman, oregonlive, "Portland Trail Blazers ‘excited’ for arrival of ‘Hall of Famer’ Carmelo Anthony: ‘He gives us another dynamic’," 17 Nov. 2019 Kristen Stewart sounds unleashed with every line reading, teasing the whole movie toward throwaway charm. Darren Franich, EW.com, "Charlie's Angels unleashes a riotous Kristen Stewart on movie that is try-hard trash: EW review," 12 Nov. 2019 In the vintage photo, shared on Instagram, the actress appears to be posing in her Friends dressing room with her hair teased up high while wearing big hoop earrings and standing next to McMillan. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Jennifer Aniston Shares 'Friends'-Era Throwback Pic as a Birthday Tribute to Her Longtime Stylist, Chris McMillan," 10 Nov. 2019 The voting issue was something host Tom Bergeron teased would be addressed in this current season. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'Dancing With the Stars' Fans Claim the Show Has Lost “Credibility” After Latest Voting Results," 9 Nov. 2019 Having previously teased a reunion of the classic TV show, Jennifer Aniston decided to hit the red carpet at the 2019 SAG-AFTRA Foundation's Patron of the Artists Awards this week with three of her former co-stars. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Jennifer Aniston Just Reunited with Courteney Cox, Lisa Kudrow, and Paul Rudd," 9 Nov. 2019 That news, plus Red Barrels teases Outlast 3 (or maybe something else), Red Dead shows off its PC graphics some more, Death Stranding’s coming to PC next summer, and Netflix finally puts out a real trailer for The Witcher. Hayden Dingman, PCWorld, "This week in games: Look at this Terminator-themed Xbox One X and its ominous red eye," 1 Nov. 2019 Bird colors combine pigments with microscopic feather structures that tease the eye. Nell Zink, Harper's magazine, "The Bird Angle," 28 Oct. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But the bad-luck story is becoming all too familiar for Henson, who remains the ultimate tease. Chris Fedor, cleveland, "John Henson continues to tease Cleveland Cavaliers with potential, dampen hopes with injuries," 18 Oct. 2019 For 14 precious minutes, the college football world got quite the tease on Saturday. Ross Dellenger, SI.com, "The Rundown: Clemson's UNC Scare Paves Way for Shake-Up in Top 10," 28 Sep. 2019 But the back-of-the-book tease for this work declared otherwise: For brooding tech billionaire Massimo Brunetti, a cyberattack on his company is unacceptable. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Penetration testing takes on new meaning when cyber meets Harlequin," 5 July 2019 The candidate joined in on the tease on social media. Dareh Gregorian, NBC News, "What is Andrew Yang's 'big' Democratic debate surprise?," 11 Sep. 2019 The tease of the next Marvel movie paled in comparison to Johansson's other big reveal: an 11-carat diamond engagement ring—which experts estimate could be worth approximately $400,000. Carrie Goldberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "Scarlett Johansson's Engagement Ring Is One of The Chicest We've Ever Seen," 24 July 2019 For every tease the Sox turned a corner, there was always another wall to crash into. Tara Sullivan, BostonGlobe.com, "Moments to savor for Red Sox have been precious and few," 7 Sep. 2019 The accompanying video doesn't give a tease for the song, but features Grimes running in natured dressed in Adidas. Rania Aniftos, Billboard, "Grimes Announces New Single Release Date in Adidas Ad: Watch," 13 Aug. 2019 Netflix has unveiled several stills from the upcoming satire, offering tantalizing teases for characters played by Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Lange, Ben Platt, and more. Joey Nolfi, EW.com, "Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Lange serve strong in The Politician first-look photos," 8 Aug. 2019

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

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 4a

Noun

1680, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for tease

Verb

Middle English tesen, from Old English tǣsan; akin to Old High German zeisan to tease

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Time Traveler for tease

Time Traveler

The first known use of tease was before the 12th century

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Statistics for tease

Last Updated

21 Nov 2019

Cite this Entry

“Tease.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/teased. Accessed 22 November 2019.

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More Definitions for tease

tease

verb
How to pronounce tease (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of tease

: to laugh at and criticize (someone) in a way that is either friendly and playful or cruel and unkind
: to annoy or bother (an animal)
US : to make (hair) look fuller or bigger by combing it in a special way

tease

verb
\ ˈtēz How to pronounce tease (audio) \
teased; teasing

Kids Definition of tease

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to make fun of … some kids tease me about my name.— Paula Danziger, Amber Brown
2 : to annoy again and again Stop teasing the dog.

Other Words from tease

teaser noun

tease

noun

Kids Definition of tease (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of making fun of or repeatedly bothering a person or animal
2 : a person who makes fun of people usually in a friendly way
\ ˈtēz How to pronounce tease (audio) \
teased; teasing

Medical Definition of tease

: to tear in pieces especially : to shred (a tissue or specimen) for microscopic examination

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More from Merriam-Webster on tease

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for tease

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tease

Spanish Central: Translation of tease

Nglish: Translation of tease for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of tease for Arabic Speakers

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