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

Sixty-four percent have experienced discrimination or been victimized three times in their lives. Nicole Brodeur, The Seattle Times, "Are LGBTQ seniors dying of loneliness? It’s possible, research says," 11 Apr. 2019 Beauty 12 Slides Raise your hand if you've ever felt personally victimized by Target. Glamour, "The Best Discounts From Target's 14 Days of Deals Beauty Sale," 12 Mar. 2019 The mere existence of these images re-victimizes the child. Julie Cordua, Marie Claire, ""How I Won Millions of Dollars from TED to End Child Pornography"," 17 Apr. 2019 The Ravens have been victimized enough times by Michael Crabtree’s ability to go up and make an acrobatic catch in the end zone. Jeff Zrebiec,, "Ravens notebook: Michael Crabtree fitting in well; 13 players not participating in OTAs," 24 May 2018 Less than two minutes later, Florida victimized Chara again. Walter Villa, miamiherald, "Panthers’ playoffs hopes still alive | Miami Herald," 5 Apr. 2018 Soon, all sides were pointing fingers , giving their own accounts about feeling victimized and misunderstood. John Minchillo, The Seattle Times, "Boys school shuts down amid fallout over Washington videos," 23 Jan. 2019 Jerhonda Pace, another woman who R. Kelly allegedly victimized, and her story, marked another graphic turning point in the series. Morgan Jerkins, Teen Vogue, "R. Kelly and Other Powerful Men Have Always Manipulated Their Teen Fans," 9 Jan. 2019 The narrative put forth today is that Mr. Washington used a video as a weapon to re-victimize his former high school girlfriend. Eric Olson, The Seattle Times, "Nebraska RB Washington faces charges tied to assault video," 11 Feb. 2019

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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Statistics for victimize

Last Updated

21 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for victimize

The first known use of victimize was in 1830

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More Definitions for victimize



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

Comments on victimize

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


to move with exaggerated bouncy motions

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