terrorism

noun
ter·​ror·​ism | \ ˈter-ər-ˌi-zəm How to pronounce terrorism (audio) \

Definition of terrorism

: the systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion

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Examples of terrorism in a Sentence

They have been arrested for acts of terrorism.

Recent Examples on the Web

Get our daily newsletter Two of these attacks—in Gilroy and El Paso—are being investigated as domestic terrorism, raising questions about how police and politicians confront the threat from white-supremacist terror. The Economist, "America grapples with a lethal mix of terrorism and lax gun laws," 8 Aug. 2019 The El Paso district attorney said his office will seek the death penalty against the suspect, and federal authorities are investigating the massacre as domestic terrorism. Fox News, "El Paso shooting suspect's mom says she called police with concern about rifle son owned: report," 8 Aug. 2019 As my colleague Adi Robertson points out, these twin initiatives may have be self-canceling: One shooting was apparently an act of far-right terrorism, based on an anti-immigrant screed posted online. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Why deplatforming 8chan can be effective," 8 Aug. 2019 The murders are now being investigated as domestic terrorism. Isaac Chotiner, The New Yorker, "Representative Veronica Escobar Speaks out About Gun Violence and El Paso," 5 Aug. 2019 Who could honestly be surprised if the next major terrorism threat to America emerges only a few years from now in the form of some child or young person who is currently lonely, afraid and suffering in a cage somewhere along our southern border? Henry A. J. Ramos, The Mercury News, "Opinion: Trump is laying the seeds for a new Osama bin Laden," 31 July 2019 The states said China faced terrorism, separatism and religious extremism in the restive Xinjiang region and noted the de-radicalization measures contributed to peace and security in the restive region. Abdi Latif Dahir, Quartz Africa, "Why these African countries are defending China’s mass detention of Muslims," 15 July 2019 Corruption, terrorism, crime, and a financial crisis were the hallmarks of New York life in the 1970s. Leena Kim, Town & Country, "The Plaza's 10 Juiciest Secrets Revealed," 7 June 2019 Israel and Western countries see those payments, which began in the 1960s, as incentivizing terrorism. David M. Halbfinger, New York Times, "New Palestinian Premier Warns of a ‘Very Hot Summer’," 5 June 2019

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

1795, in the meaning defined above

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More Definitions for terrorism

terrorism

noun

English Language Learners Definition of terrorism

: the use of violent acts to frighten the people in an area as a way of trying to achieve a political goal

terrorism

noun
ter·​ror·​ism | \ ˈter-ər-ˌi-zəm How to pronounce terrorism (audio) \

Kids Definition of terrorism

: the use of violence as a means of achieving a goal

terrorism

noun
ter·​ror·​ism | \ ˈter-ər-ˌi-zəm How to pronounce terrorism (audio) \

Legal Definition of terrorism

1 : the unlawful use or threat of violence especially against the state or the public as a politically motivated means of attack or coercion
2 : violent and intimidating gang activity street terrorism

Other Words from terrorism

terrorist \ -​ist How to pronounce terrorist (audio) \ adjective or noun
terroristic \ ˌter-​ər-​ˈis-​tik How to pronounce terroristic (audio) \ adjective

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