witch hunt


Definition of witch hunt 

1 : a searching out for persecution of persons accused of witchcraft

2 : the searching out and deliberate harassment of those (such as political opponents) with unpopular views

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Other Words from witch hunt

witch-hunter noun
witch-hunting noun or adjective

Examples of witch hunt in a Sentence

He was the victim of a congressional witch hunt against Communists.

Recent Examples on the Web

The current probe -- into Russian meddling as well as the possibility of obstruction and collusion -- is pointless, is a witch hunt, is already proven to be a hoax. Chris Cillizza, CNN, "What the heck is Rudy Giuliani talking about?," 15 June 2018 Instead, his immediate instinct — one that reflects his long-time immersion in, and relationship to, right-wing media — was to play the victim of a liberal witch hunt. David Roberts, Vox, "Tribalism fueled Scott Pruitt’s rise to power — and the scandals that came with it," 5 July 2018 Now, after spending 18 months warning us all, the sky is falling, because of the fake, phony narrative, the witch hunts that Donald Trump was somehow Vladimir Putin's puppet. Fox News, "Steve Bannon on NATO: Trump is saying 'no more games'," 12 July 2018 The intent was to show that Strzok, was involved in the Russia investigation until a year ago, was biased, and that the investigation itself is a political witch hunt. Jeet Heer, The New Republic, "The House Judiciary hearings into Russia investigation have become a circus.," 12 July 2018 The question is whether he will be allowed to complete his investigation unmolested by the president who derides his efforts as a witch hunt. Paul Thornton, latimes.com, "Trump shouldn't 'hereby demand' anything from the Justice Dept.," 26 May 2018 This has intensified the nation's hyper-partisan political climate, with Trump calling the investigation a witch hunt. Stephen Koff, cleveland.com, "Jim Renacci wins U.S. Senate primary, setting up challenge to Sherrod Brown in the fall," 8 May 2018 In the 1950s San Diego State professor Dr. Harry C.Steinmetz became a victim of a McCarthy era anti-Communist witch hunt. sandiegouniontribune.com, "July 7, 1955: Steinmetz called Communist at hearing," 7 July 2018 Paul Manafort, the Campaign Manager Trump Barely Remembers, Is Headed to Jail Mark Wilson/Getty Images What a weirdly productive witch hunt. Luke Darby, GQ, "Paul Manafort, the Campaign Manager Trump Barely Remembers, Is Headed to Jail," 15 June 2018

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

1885, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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More Definitions for witch hunt

witch hunt


English Language Learners Definition of witch hunt

: the act of unfairly looking for and punishing people who are accused of having opinions that are believed to be dangerous or evil

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