tyr·​an·​nize | \ ˈtir-ə-ˌnīz How to pronounce tyrannize (audio) \
tyrannized; tyrannizing

Definition of tyrannize

intransitive verb

: to exercise arbitrary oppressive power or severity some ways the living tyrannize over the dying— Thomas Powers

transitive verb

: to treat tyrannically : oppress a regime that tyrannizes its citizens

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from tyrannize

tyrannizer noun

Examples of tyrannize in a Sentence

a government that tyrannizes its own people

First Known Use of tyrannize

15th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about tyrannize

Statistics for tyrannize

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for tyrannize

The first known use of tyrannize was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for tyrannize



English Language Learners Definition of tyrannize

: to use power to treat (people) in a cruel and unfair way

More from Merriam-Webster on tyrannize

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tyrannize

Spanish Central: Translation of tyrannize

Nglish: Translation of tyrannize for Spanish Speakers

Comments on tyrannize

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


miscellaneous remnants or debris

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Add Diction

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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