vic·​tim·​ize | \ ˈvik-tə-ˌmīz How to pronounce victimize (audio) \
victimized; victimizing

Definition of victimize

transitive verb

1 : to make a victim of
2 : to subject to deception or fraud : cheat

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Other Words from victimize

victimization \ ˌvik-​tə-​mə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce victimization (audio) \ noun
victimizer \ ˈvik-​tə-​ˌmī-​zər How to pronounce victimizer (audio) \ noun

Examples of victimize in a Sentence

They were victimized because of their religion. victimized by a confidence man with a slick story
Recent Examples on the Web Family violence was extremely common and alcoholism was prevalent and women became victimized in many, many circumstances. New York Times, "António Guterres Wants Gender Parity at the U.N. It May Take Time.," 5 Mar. 2020 But if its criteria for detecting violations and taking action is too loose, other users will be victimized and the company itself could find itself at the center of another public relations debacle. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, "Meet the A.I. that helped Facebook remove billions of fake accounts," 4 Mar. 2020 And nearly one in five ended up experiencing health problems or emotional distress from being victimized or targeted. Susan Tompor, Detroit Free Press, "Was too much money deposited into your bank? It may be a scam," 27 Feb. 2020 Bloomberg recently laid out some gun safety reform policies in December 2019 at an event in Auora, Colorado, a town that was victimized in 2012 by a mass shooting at a movie theater and resulted in 12 people killed. al, "Michael Bloomberg: Mobile football game shooting shows gun violence ‘a true national emergency’," 7 Jan. 2020 Creed’s attorney contends that only the foundation was victimized that way. Don Stacom,, "Federal prosecutors want court to let defrauded donors speak at Bristol attorney’s sentencing," 29 Oct. 2019 The Winter Park Police Department has asked anyone with information about the case or who may have been victimized by Fulwider to call 407-599-3211. Grace Toohey,, "Sons of Rev. Bryan Fulwider, who killed himself after child rape arrest: ‘We believe the victim’ | Exclusive," 28 Oct. 2019 Garoppolo watched Tom Brady mount a late-game touchdown drive to beat the Seahawks in Super Bowl XLIX and then, two years later, witnessed him orchestrate the greatest comeback in Super Bowl history against Atlanta (victimizing Kyle Shanahan). Ann Killion,, "49ers’ Jimmy Garoppolo, Steve Young: Backup QB Super Bowl rings matter," 23 Jan. 2020 The income came from Rowland's part of a $16 million international e-mail con game victimizing businesses that federal prosecutors say involved at least 23 people in South Florida, 42 in the United States and 74 people around the world. David J. Neal, miamiherald, "The 21-year-old's company had $1.6 million after 23 days. She'll be sentenced in July," 13 June 2018

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

1830, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for victimize

Time Traveler

The first known use of victimize was in 1830

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Statistics for victimize

Last Updated

25 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Victimize.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Apr. 2020.

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More Definitions for victimize


How to pronounce victimize (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of victimize

: to treat (someone) cruelly or unfairly
chiefly US : to make a victim of (someone) : to harm or commit a crime against (someone)


vic·​tim·​ize | \ ˈvik-tə-ˌmīz How to pronounce victimize (audio) \
victimized; victimizing

Kids Definition of victimize

: to make a victim of

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More from Merriam-Webster on victimize

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for victimize

Spanish Central: Translation of victimize

Nglish: Translation of victimize for Spanish Speakers

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