thwart

verb
\ ˈthwȯrt How to pronounce thwart (audio) \
thwarted; thwarting; thwarts

Definition of thwart

 (Entry 1 of 4)

transitive verb

1a : to oppose successfully : defeat the hopes or aspirations of
b : to run counter to so as to effectively oppose or baffle : contravene
2 : to pass through or across

thwart

adverb
\ ˈthwȯrt How to pronounce thwart (audio) , naut often ˈthȯrt\

Definition of thwart (Entry 2 of 4)

thwart

adjective

Definition of thwart (Entry 3 of 4)

: situated or placed across something else : transverse

thwart

noun

Definition of thwart (Entry 4 of 4)

: a seat extending athwart a boat

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Other Words from thwart

Verb

thwarter noun

Adjective

thwartly adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for thwart

Synonyms: Verb

baffle, balk, beat, checkmate, discomfit, foil, frustrate

Antonyms: Verb

advance, cultivate, encourage, forward, foster, further, nurture, promote

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Choose the Right Synonym for thwart

Verb

frustrate, thwart, foil, baffle, balk mean to check or defeat another's plan or block achievement of a goal. frustrate implies making vain or ineffectual all efforts however vigorous or persistent. frustrated attempts at government reform thwart suggests frustration or checking by crossing or opposing. the army thwarted his attempt at a coup foil implies checking or defeating so as to discourage further effort. foiled by her parents, he stopped trying to see her baffle implies frustration by confusing or puzzling. baffled by the maze of rules and regulations balk suggests the interposing of obstacles or hindrances. officials felt that legal restrictions had balked their efforts to control crime

Did You Know?

Verb

Thwart and its synonyms "foil" and "frustrate" all suggest checking or defeating another's plan or preventing the achievement of a goal. "Foil" implies checking or defeating so as to discourage future efforts ("foiled by her parents, he stopped trying to see her"), while "frustrate" suggests making all efforts, however vigorous or persistent, futile or ineffectual ("frustrated attempts at government reform"). "Thwart" usually indicates frustration caused by opposition ("the army thwarted an attempted coup").

Examples of thwart in a Sentence

Verb

She did all she could to thwart his plans. The army thwarted the attempt at a coup.

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Most notably, the committee members wanted to know about several episodes described in the Mueller report as attempts to thwart the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Rebecca Morin, USA TODAY, "Hope Hicks, former Trump aide, didn't answer 155 questions during testimony. Here's what they are.," 21 June 2019 The heroic attempt to thwart such a heist ends in catastrophe. Nick Romano, EW.com, "Marvel's Avengers videogame revealed: Watch the trailer," 11 June 2019 This isn’t the first time scientists have turned to radiocarbon dating in an attempt to thwart forgers. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian, "Cold War Nuclear Bomb Tests Are Helping Researchers Identify Art Forgeries," 7 June 2019 His last attempted visit was thwarted by bad weather. Washington Post, "The Latest: NKorea’s state media calls DMZ meeting ‘amazing’," 1 July 2019 By 1969 frustration had reached a critical level as the crackdown by police and the Army intensified, and hopes for change were thwarted by an obdurate establishment. Peter Keough, BostonGlobe.com, "Documentary tales of two ’60s," 27 June 2019 Both of those efforts were thwarted in 2017 and Patrick blamed Straus, whose priority public education bill fell victim to those squabbles. James Barragán, Dallas News, "Former Texas House Speaker Joe Straus forms new PAC," 26 June 2019 Both teams had early chances to get the game’s first run but were thwarted by stellar defense. Mike Cook, Twin Cities, "Class 3A state baseball: St. Thomas Academy holds on to win title," 20 June 2019 Sweden long has been a power, but it has been thwarted by its American rival throughout the World Cup’s history. Kelly Whiteside, New York Times, "U.S. Faces Sweden at the World Cup With Something to Gain but Even More to Prove," 20 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Germany has previously had success with American intelligence information helping thwart plots, most notably in 2007 in stopping a plan to bomb the U.S. Air Force's Ramstein Air Base in southern Germany. David Rising, Fox News, "German teenager arrested in gay club bomb attack plan," 13 Sep. 2018 The center yoke thwart is perfectly balanced for one-person portages. The Editors, Outside Online, "REI Is Having an Huge Sale on Water Sports Gear," 18 May 2018

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

Verb

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1b

Adverb

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

14th century, in the meaning defined above

Noun

circa 1736, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for thwart

Verb

Middle English thwerten, from thwert, adverb

Adverb

Middle English thwert, from Old Norse thvert, from neuter of thverr transverse, oblique; akin to Old High German dwerah transverse, oblique

Noun

alteration of obsolete thought, thoft, from Middle English thoft, from Old English thofte; akin to Old High German dofta rower's seat

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Dictionary Entries near thwart

thwacker

thwaite

thwap

thwart

thwartedly

thwartover

thwartsaw

Statistics for thwart

Last Updated

18 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for thwart

The first known use of thwart was in the 13th century

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More Definitions for thwart

thwart

verb

English Language Learners Definition of thwart

: to prevent (someone) from doing something or to stop (something) from happening

thwart

verb
\ ˈthwȯrt How to pronounce thwart (audio) \
thwarted; thwarting

Kids Definition of thwart

: to stop from happening or succeeding Police thwarted the crime.

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More from Merriam-Webster on thwart

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with thwart

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for thwart

Spanish Central: Translation of thwart

Nglish: Translation of thwart for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of thwart for Arabic Speakers

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