threat

noun
\ ˈthret \

Definition of threat

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an expression of intention to inflict evil, injury, or damage
2 : one that threatens
3 : an indication of something impending the sky held a threat of rain

threat

verb
threated; threating; threats

Definition of threat (Entry 2 of 2)

archaic

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Examples of threat in a Sentence

Noun

He was willing to use violence and threats to get what he wanted. She ignored their threats and continued to do what she felt was right. a country under threat of civil war
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Soon, the mess was gone, the threat to my child was erased, and my sanity felt not only intact, but oddly refreshed. Lorraine Allen, Good Housekeeping, "My Child Has a Severe Allergy, But I Secretly Ate Her Forbidden Food Anyway," 20 Dec. 2018 There’s no evidence of any actual explosives being placed or detonated, but the threats provoked evacuations and law enforcement investigations across the U.S., Canada and New Zealand. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Facebook wants you to buy — and watch — HBO on Facebook," 14 Dec. 2018 Thursday's post is the latest evidence that Google can't proactively police its own market for apps that pose a serious security threat, though in fairness the company is very quick to remove titles once they're reported. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, "22 apps with 2 million+ Google Play downloads had a malicious backdoor," 6 Dec. 2018 Trump wants Americans to think there is a national security threat and full-blown crisis at the southern border. Tara Golshan, Vox, "What Trump’s “lethal force” authorization means at the border," 27 Nov. 2018 Air Force security troops use the helicopters to move quick-reaction forces that respond to security threats against the 400 U.S. nuclear missile silos spread across the American West. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "The Air Force Will Replace Its Long-Serving UH-60 Huey Helicopters With a European Import," 25 Sep. 2018 When embarrassing information or legal threats don’t work, people with power and financial means often turn to old-fashioned payola. Ben Widdicombe, Town & Country, "How Much Does It Cost to Keep Your Name Out of the News?," 18 Jan. 2019 President Barack Obama also issued national emergencies in response to African conflicts like Somali piracy, as well as taking on Chinese cybersecurity threats and Russia after the invasion of Crimea in Ukraine. Lucy Diavolo, Teen Vogue, "Donald Trump Is Threatening to Declare a National Emergency to Get Border Wall Funding. Here's Why He Shouldn’t.," 11 Jan. 2019 And today, threats like doxing, reporting of work, and white gatekeeping are common tactics used to silence those who speak that truth. Rachel Elizabeth Cargle, Harper's BAZAAR, "When White People Are Uncomfortable, Black People Are Silenced," 9 Jan. 2019

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

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for threat

Noun

Middle English thret coercion, threat, from Old English thrēat coercion; akin to Middle High German drōz annoyance, Latin trudere to push, thrust

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Statistics for threat

Last Updated

7 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for threat

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

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More Definitions for threat

threat

noun

English Language Learners Definition of threat

: a statement saying you will be harmed if you do not do what someone wants you to do
: someone or something that could cause trouble, harm, etc.
: the possibility that something bad or harmful could happen

threat

noun
\ ˈthret \

Kids Definition of threat

1 : the act of showing an intention to do harm
2 : someone or something that threatens the threat of punishment

threat

noun

Legal Definition of threat

: an expression of an intention to injure another : menace sense 1 criminal laws against making terroristic threats

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More from Merriam-Webster on threat

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with threat

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for threat

Spanish Central: Translation of threat

Nglish: Translation of threat for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of threat for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about threat

Comments on threat

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