wreak was our Word of the Day on 07/25/2017. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of wreak in a Sentence
Gangs have been wreaking mayhem in the city.
Recent Examples of wreak from the Web
This play, like many others inspired by the global AIDS epidemic of the 1980s, addresses the havoc that AIDS wreaks on its victims and society.
Demand for it is surging—and that is wreaking havoc not only on Vietnam’s rivers, but also on the all-important Mekong Delta.
And here’s perhaps the most disturbing part: The vandal or vandals wasted no time in wreaking havoc: The balls had been delivered just two days earlier.
Cancer wreaks a monumental physical and psychological toll, and any and every coping mechanism has value and should not be knocked.
Trying to shut down Telegram in a vast game of digital whack-a-mole, Roskomnadzor wreaked internet havoc among legitimate Russian websites that use the same services.
The Roadrunner defensive line wreaked havoc, registering 13 sacks and 19 tackles for loss.
Your hair products are wreaking havoc on your skin.
Bad weather and windy conditions wreaked havoc on the Alpine schedule early in the week, but the skies were clear and the wind barely noticeable Thursday morning as skiers assembled at the top of the hill.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wreak.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Wreak is a venerable word that first appeared in Old English as wrecan, meaning "to drive, drive out, punish, or avenge." "Wrecan" is related to a number of similar words in the Germanic languages, including Middle Dutch "wreken" ("to punish, avenge"), Old High German rehhan ("to avenge"), Old Norse "reka" ("to drive, push, or avenge"), and Gothic "wrikan" ("to persecute"). It may also be related to Latin urgēre ("to drive on, urge"), the source of the English verb "urge." In modern English, vengeance is a common object of the verb "wreak," reflecting one of its earlier uses in the sense "to take vengeance for" - as when Shakespeare's Titus Andronicus proclaims "We will solicit heaven, and move the gods / To send down Justice for to wreak our wrongs."
Origin and Etymology of wreak
WREAK Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of wreak for English Language Learners
: to cause (something very harmful or damaging)
WREAK Defined for Kids
Seen and Heard
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