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) , nautical 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

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from thwart

Verb

thwarter noun

Adjective

thwartly adverb

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 Lucille frequently conspires with her fellow-Karen, a neighbor named Ethel, to thwart Ricardo’s efforts to help other immigrants band together and build a better world. Jay Martel, The New Yorker, "Rebooted," 23 Nov. 2020 Being more transparent in communicating about COVID-19-positive cases to thwart gossip. Jamie L. Lareau, Detroit Free Press, "GM ups effort to safeguard parts supplied for its full-size pickup, SUV plants," 18 Nov. 2020 During the Comprehensive Zoning Map Process, the council voted, along with Marks, to thwart an effort by the Harris Hills Condominium Association and the Green Towson Alliance seeking to block the development by rezoning it. Taylor Deville, baltimoresun.com, "Baltimore County Council rejects bill that affordable housing developer said would kill Towson project," 16 Nov. 2020 The hot soak for several hours is a key step in fortifying the glass vials from cracks, flakes and breaks that could thwart global efforts to stop the coronavirus. Jared S. Hopkins, WSJ, "Covid-19 Vaccines Could Depend on the Strength of This Vial," 13 Nov. 2020 Orange county voters this month overwhelmingly approved a measure that supporters hope could thwart plans to run a new toll road through the Split Oak Forest nature preserve. Stephen Hudak, orlandosentinel.com, "Environmentalists press Orange Mayor Demings to pick a Split Oak supporter for toll-road board," 11 Nov. 2020 In an effort to thwart rumors about him and Stause's relationship, Savchenko gave an exclusive statement to E! Kelly Corbett, House Beautiful, "Did Chrishell Stause and Gleb Savchenko Have an Affair? Here's Everything We Know," 11 Nov. 2020 Neither an internecine fight with Trump over accepting the election results nor a messy multi-week effort to thwart counting would help Republicans prevail. Laura Litvan, Bloomberg.com, "Trump’s Hold on GOP Means Few Are Disputing His Election Claims," 6 Nov. 2020 The vaccine, made by Merck, had been the leading hope for what was then a 20-year search for a shot that could thwart HIV. Jon Cohen, Science | AAAS, "Could certain COVID-19 vaccines leave people more vulnerable to the AIDS virus?," 19 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Serving as captain of the maintop of the U.S.S. Pawnee in the attack upon Mathias Point, 26 June 1861, Williams told his men, while lying off in the boat, that every man must die on his thwart sooner than leave a man behind. Drew Broach | Staff Writer, NOLA.com, "On Veterans Day, meet all 26 of Louisiana's Medal of Honor recipients," 10 Nov. 2020 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.

See More

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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about thwart

Time Traveler for thwart

Time Traveler

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

See more words from the same century

Listen to Our Podcast about thwart

Statistics for thwart

Last Updated

26 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Thwart.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/thwart. Accessed 30 Nov. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for thwart

thwart

verb
How to pronounce thwart (audio)

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.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on thwart

What made you want to look up thwart? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

A Thanksgiving Word Quiz

  • a traditional thanksgiving dinner
  • November comes from a word for which of the following numbers?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!