\ ˈthrash How to pronounce thrash (audio) \
thrashed; thrashing; thrashes

Definition of thrash

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to beat soundly with or as if with a stick or whip : flog
b : to defeat decisively or severely thrashed the visiting team
2 : to swing, beat, or strike in the manner of a rapidly moving flail thrashing his arms
3a : to go over again and again thrash the matter over inconclusively
b : to hammer out : forge thrash out a plan
4 : to separate the seeds of from the husks and straw by beating : thresh sense 1

intransitive verb

1 : to move or stir about violently : toss about thrash in bed with a fever
2 : to deal blows or strokes like one using a flail or whip



Definition of thrash (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act of thrashing
2 : rock music (such as heavy metal or punk rock) that is extremely fast and loud

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Choose the Right Synonym for thrash


swing, wave, flourish, brandish, thrash mean to wield or cause to move to and fro or up and down. swing implies regular or uniform movement. swing the rope back and forth wave usually implies smooth or continuous motion. waving the flag flourish suggests vigorous, ostentatious, graceful movement. flourished the winning lottery ticket brandish implies threatening or menacing motion. brandishing a knife thrash suggests vigorous, abrupt, violent movement. an infant thrashing his arms about

Examples of thrash in a Sentence

Verb He thrashed me with his belt. The team thrashed them last week. Something was thrashing wildly in the water. She thrashed around in her sleep. Noun The shark swam away with a thrash of its tail.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Oregon has been thrashing opponents during its 10-game streak, winning by an average of 26.7 points. oregonlive, "No. 3 Oregon Ducks women’s basketball at No. 7 UCLA Bruins: Live updates," 15 Feb. 2020 Delhi’s 20m people are less than 2% of India’s population, and the party that thrashed the BJP is politically irrelevant beyond the city limits. The Economist, "Capital loss India’s ruling party receives a drubbing in Delhi," 13 Feb. 2020 In her expert hands, the music soared and sang, throbbed and thrashed, all to enormous impact. Zachary Lewis, cleveland, "Cleveland Orchestra soars in Sibelius, Knussen with boost from gifted champions," 7 Feb. 2020 Humpback whales These cetaceans have the mysterious habit of interfering with orca hunts by placing themselves between the pod and the quarry, thrashing their imposing flippers and tail flukes if the orcas get too close. National Geographic, "Parrots help others in need, study shows for first time," 10 Jan. 2020 That morning, the wind roared outside, loud as ocean surf; the branches of the poplar tree in front of our house thrashed; leaves and twigs drifted ankle deep into the gutters; and the air smelled like smoke. Vanessa Hua,, "Power shut-offs: Anxiety creeps in when lights go out," 31 Oct. 2019 No fullback had scored via pass since 1995, when the 49ers thrashed San Diego for what was their most recent championship entering Sunday night., "Another nightmare Super Bowl ending for Kyle Shanahan," 2 Feb. 2020 Against Boston, who’d lost Kemba Walker earlier in the game, a 19-point Denver lead was nearly thrashed by a furious 35-point fourth quarter from the Celtics. Mike Singer, The Denver Post, "Nuggets journal: Five New Year’s resolutions that could raise Denver’s profile," 28 Dec. 2019 That score is down from 24.6 on August 5, the highest value of the rating since December 2018, when stocks were thrashing and climaxed in the big Christmas Eve tumble. Erik Sherman, Fortune, "Why Volatility is Starting to Plague Many Asset Classes, Not Just Stocks," 20 Aug. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Back then, a talent agency, Amuse, put the young Japanese singers together and fused a musical concept that, somehow, nobody had ever thought to try: Intense, hardcore thrash at the bottom and high-pitched, lighthearted pop vocals at the top. Steve Knopper,, "Everything about Babymetal is metal," 19 Sep. 2019 Robb Flynn is the only remaining original member of the thrash metal band formed in Oakland, California, in the early 1990s. Chuck Yarborough, cleveland, "Thrash metal’s Machine Head and next-gen Southern rockers the Allman Betts Band take over Also Playing," 4 Feb. 2020 While punctuating her stage-prowl with stomps and thrashes, that blue flame that always seems to be glowing in the back of her throat burned hot and steady. Chris Richards, Washington Post, "Jingle Ball is still a corporate pop holiday party. But it’s still magic, too.," 17 Dec. 2019 The SoCal four-piece released a string of seminal thrash classics in the ‘80s and early ‘90s, including their genre-defying 1986 magnum opus, Reign in Blood. Bryan Rolli, Billboard, "Slayer Close Out First Leg of Farewell Tour with Blistering, Career-Spanning Austin Performance," 21 June 2018 But while the commander-in-chief thrashes about, something important is taking shape in his shadow — the outlines of a new conservatism inspired, or at least elevated, by his rise to power. David Scharfenberg,, "How Donald Trump just might save the Republican Party — and the country," 6 Sep. 2019 Dorian was now a Category 5 Hurricane, beginning its long thrash of the Bahamas. Dan Zak, Washington Post, "‘This isn’t just a stupid story, it’s a big story’: An oral history of Sharpiegate," 13 Sep. 2019 The record marks a thrash-metal departure from the band’s psych-rock roots, but its manic energy and gut-punch grit amount to a sound unmistakably all King Gizz’s own. Andrea Domanick, Los Angeles Times, "Best live music around L.A.: Carly Rae Jepsen, a mammoth hip-hop festival and more," 6 Aug. 2019 Slayer’s grizzled lead vocalist and bassist asserted his laryngeal dominance over some 14,000 fans at the Austin360 Amphitheater on Wednesday night (June 20), the final stop on the first leg of the thrash titans’ hefty farewell tour. Bryan Rolli, Billboard, "Slayer Close Out First Leg of Farewell Tour with Blistering, Career-Spanning Austin Performance," 21 June 2018

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


1568, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 4


1840, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for thrash


alteration of thresh

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Time Traveler for thrash

Time Traveler

The first known use of thrash was in 1568

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Statistics for thrash

Last Updated

21 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Thrash.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for thrash


How to pronounce thrash (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of thrash

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to hit (someone or something) very hard with a stick, whip, etc.
informal : to defeat (someone or something) very easily or completely
: to move about violently



English Language Learners Definition of thrash (Entry 2 of 2)

: a type of rock music that is very fast and loud
: a violent movement
British, informal + old-fashioned : a party with loud music and dancing


\ ˈthrash How to pronounce thrash (audio) \
thrashed; thrashing

Kids Definition of thrash

1 : to beat very hard
2 : to move about violently Something was thrashing wildly in the brush.

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More from Merriam-Webster on thrash

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for thrash

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with thrash

Spanish Central: Translation of thrash

Nglish: Translation of thrash for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of thrash for Arabic Speakers

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