vi·​tu·​per·​ate | \ vī-ˈtü-pə-ˌrāt How to pronounce vituperate (audio) , və-, -ˈtyü- \
vituperated; vituperating

Definition of vituperate

transitive verb

: to abuse or censure severely or abusively : berate

intransitive verb

: to use harsh condemnatory language

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Other Words from vituperate

vituperator \ vī-​ˈtü-​pə-​ˌrā-​tər How to pronounce vituperate (audio) , və-​ , -​ˈtyü-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for vituperate

scold, upbraid, berate, rail, revile, vituperate mean to reproach angrily and abusively. scold implies rebuking in irritation or ill temper justly or unjustly. angrily scolding the children upbraid implies censuring on definite and usually justifiable grounds. upbraided her assistants for poor research berate suggests prolonged and often abusive scolding. berated continually by an overbearing boss rail (at or against) stresses an unrestrained berating. railed loudly at their insolence revile implies a scurrilous, abusive attack prompted by anger or hatred. an alleged killer reviled in the press vituperate suggests a violent reviling. was vituperated for betraying his friends

Did You Know?

Vituperate has several close synonyms, including "berate" and "revile." "Berate" usually refers to scolding that is drawn out and abusive. "Revile" means to attack or criticize in a way prompted by anger or hatred. "Vituperate" adds to the meaning of "revile" by stressing an attack that is particularly violent in nature. It first appeared in English in the mid-16th century and can be traced back to two Latin words: the noun vitium, meaning "fault," and the verb parare, meaning "to make or prepare."

Examples of vituperate in a Sentence

every week the minister would ascend the pulpit and vituperate the parishioners for a litany of vices

First Known Use of vituperate

1542, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for vituperate

Latin vituperatus, past participle of vituperare, from vitium fault + parare to make, prepare — more at pare

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The first known use of vituperate was in 1542

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Cite this Entry

“Vituperate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

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