terrorize

verb
ter·​ror·​ize | \ ˈter-ər-ˌīz How to pronounce terrorize (audio) \
terrorized; terrorizing

Definition of terrorize

transitive verb

1 : to fill with terror or anxiety : scare
2 : to coerce by threat or violence

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Other Words from terrorize

terrorization \ ˌter-​ər-​ə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce terrorize (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for terrorize

Synonyms

Antonyms

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Examples of terrorize in a Sentence

As a child she terrorized her younger siblings. She was terrorized by nightmares. Employees were terrorized into accepting abysmal working conditions.
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Recent Examples on the Web That trauma has always been minimized as acts of violence portrayed as individual acts, rather than the deliberate campaigns to terrorize the people into submission. Tim Chan, Rolling Stone, "Screw the ‘Model Minority’ Myth: Why It’s Time for Asians to Fight Back," 23 Apr. 2021 With Lucky sequestered, the Emorys’ racist neighbors capitalize on the opportunity to terrorize her family members. Ariana Romero, refinery29.com, "Them’s Finale Loses The Thread & Then Sets It On Fire," 9 Apr. 2021 The song paints in devastating detail the period of lynching carried out against Black Americans for decades after the abolition of slavery, often as a way to terrorize and oppress those who sought racial equality. The Salt Lake Tribune, "George Floyd’s brother joins protest anthem album project," 7 Mar. 2021 The song paints in devastating detail the period of lynching carried out against Black Americans for decades after the abolition of slavery, often as a way to terrorize and oppress those who sought racial equality. Aaron Morrison, USA TODAY, "George Floyd kin joins protest anthem album project," 2 Mar. 2021 The purpose of these current killings appears to be to terrorize Afghan society into submitting to whatever terms emerge from the talks, whether that is a peace agreement or civil war. New York Times, "Targeted Killings Are Terrorizing Afghans. And No One Is Claiming Them.," 2 Jan. 2021 The song paints in devastating detail the period of lynching carried out against Black Americans for decades after the abolition of slavery, often as a way to terrorize and oppress those who sought racial equality. The Salt Lake Tribune, "George Floyd’s brother joins protest anthem album project," 7 Mar. 2021 The song paints in devastating detail the period of lynching carried out against Black Americans for decades after the abolition of slavery, often as a way to terrorize and oppress those who sought racial equality. Aaron Morrison, USA TODAY, "George Floyd kin joins protest anthem album project," 2 Mar. 2021 The vengeful spirit of a dead teenager returns 20 years later to terrorize four high-school students trapped in an auditorium. Ed Stockly, Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week: ‘My Fair Lady’; ‘Marry Poppins’," 19 Mar. 2021

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

1823, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for terrorize

Time Traveler

The first known use of terrorize was in 1823

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Statistics for terrorize

Last Updated

1 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Terrorize.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/terrorize. Accessed 8 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for terrorize

terrorize

verb

English Language Learners Definition of terrorize

: to cause (someone) to be extremely afraid
: to force (someone) to do something by using threats or violence

terrorize

verb
ter·​ror·​ize | \ ˈter-ər-ˌīz How to pronounce terrorize (audio) \
terrorized; terrorizing

Kids Definition of terrorize

1 : to fill with fear
2 : to use terrorism against

terrorize

transitive verb
ter·​ror·​ize | \ ˈter-ər-ˌīz How to pronounce terrorize (audio) \
terrorized; terrorizing

Legal Definition of terrorize

: to inflict terror upon

Other Words from terrorize

terrorization \ ˌter-​ər-​ə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce terrorize (audio) \ noun

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Comments on terrorize

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