van·quish | \ˈvaŋ-kwish, ˈvan- \
vanquished; vanquishing; vanquishes

Definition of vanquish 

transitive verb

1 : to overcome in battle : subdue completely

2 : to defeat in a conflict or contest

3 : to gain mastery over (an emotion, passion, or temptation) vanquish your fear

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from vanquish

vanquishable \ˈvaŋ-kwi-shə-bəl, ˈvan- \ adjective
vanquisher noun

Choose the Right Synonym for vanquish

conquer, vanquish, defeat, subdue, reduce, overcome, overthrow mean to get the better of by force or strategy. conquer implies gaining mastery of. Caesar conquered Gaul vanquish implies a complete overpowering. vanquished the enemy and ended the war defeat does not imply the finality or completeness of vanquish which it otherwise equals. the Confederates defeated the Union forces at Manassas subdue implies a defeating and suppression. subdued the native tribes after years of fighting reduce implies a forcing to capitulate or surrender. the city was reduced after a month-long siege overcome suggests getting the better of with difficulty or after hard struggle. overcame a host of bureaucratic roadblocks overthrow stresses the bringing down or destruction of existing power. violently overthrew the old regime

Examples of vanquish in a Sentence

They were vanquished in battle. vanquished nation after nation in his relentless conquest of Europe

Recent Examples on the Web

Trump returned to Washington declaring victory and saying the nuclear threat from North Korea had been vanquished. Tracy Wilkinson,, "Pompeo pushes back on North Korea complaints, insists nuclear talks are on track," 8 July 2018 When, in any earlier time, have inhabitants of purchased or vanquished territories been consulted about their preferences? Edward Rothstein, WSJ, "A New Gateway to the West," 2 July 2018 That makes Latin America the backdrop of the second ground war the two will be engaged in since Didi vanquished the U.S. ride-hail player in China in 2016. Johana Bhuiyan, Recode, "Here’s how Uber compares against Didi around the world," 5 June 2018 Just as minivans replaced the family station wagon in the 1980s, so too did big SUVs vanquish those vans in the 1990s. Aaron Bragman, USA TODAY, "Review: Ford's revamped Expedition SUV moves to the front of the pack," 13 July 2018 Russia, its worst fears vanquished, has done just that. Rory Smith, New York Times, "Finally, a Loss for Russia. But Only on the Field.," 25 June 2018 Or would these newbies eventually vanquish natural diamonds, as happened when cultured pearl came on the scene and eviscerated natural pearls? Lynn Yaeger, Vogue, "5 Dazzling New Jewelry Designers From the Las Vegas Couture Show," 15 June 2018 Trump has given no formal order to pull out the 2,000 U.S. troops in Syria or offered a public timetable other than to say the U.S. will withdraw as soon as the remaining Islamic State fighters can be vanquished. Washington Post, "Trump warns Assad: ‘Big price to pay’ for fatal Syria attack," 9 Apr. 2018 His cross-eyes and panting-dog demeanor belie a natural genius, which is the player's talent at jumping on enemies and spinning into them like a dervish to vanquish them. Harold Goldberg,, "Classic games, lovingly reimagined in 'Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy'," 13 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for vanquish

Middle English venquishen, borrowed from Anglo-French venquis-, extended stem of veintre, vaincre "to defeat, conquer," going back to Latin vincere — more at victor

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about vanquish

Statistics for vanquish

Last Updated

23 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for vanquish

The first known use of vanquish was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for vanquish



English Language Learners Definition of vanquish

: to defeat (someone) completely in a war, battle, etc.


van·quish | \ˈvaŋ-kwish \
vanquished; vanquishing

Kids Definition of vanquish

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on vanquish

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for vanquish

Spanish Central: Translation of vanquish

Nglish: Translation of vanquish for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vanquish for Arabic Speakers

Comments on vanquish

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


required by fashion, etiquette, or custom

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble-tiles-that-read-scrabble-quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


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!