wreck

noun
\ ˈrek How to pronounce wreck (audio) \

Definition of wreck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something cast up on the land by the sea especially after a shipwreck
2a : shipwreck
b : the action of wrecking or fact or state of being wrecked : destruction
c : a violent and destructive crash was injured in a car wreck
3a : a hulk or the ruins of a wrecked ship
b : the broken remains of something wrecked or otherwise ruined
c : something disabled or in a state of ruin or dilapidation the house was a wreck also : a person or animal of broken constitution, health, or spirits he's a nervous wreck

wreck

verb
wrecked; wrecking; wrecks

Definition of wreck (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to cast ashore
2a : to reduce to a ruinous state by or as if by violence a country wrecked by war ambition wrecked his marriage
b : shipwreck
c : to ruin, damage, or imperil by a wreck wrecked the car
3 : bring about, wreak wreck havoc

intransitive verb

1 : to become wrecked
2 : to rob, salvage, or repair wreckage or a wreck

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Synonyms for wreck

Synonyms: Noun

ashes, debris, detritus, flotsam, remains, residue, rubble, ruins, wreckage

Synonyms: Verb

shipwreck, strand

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Examples of wreck in a Sentence

Noun

This car has never been in a wreck. The stress of her final exams made her a wreck. Dad was a nervous wreck on the day I had my surgery.

Verb

I wrecked my mother's car. Many houses were wrecked by the hurricane. The affair wrecked his marriage. Bad weather wrecked our vacation.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Smrcina said the purpose of the expedition is to assess the condition of the wreck and look at the marine life that inhabits the site. BostonGlobe.com, "It was the New England’s greatest steamship disaster at the time, and later became known as the “Titanic of New England.”," 17 Sep. 2019 There were no witnesses to the wreck and no one else was injured. Keri Blakinger, Houston Chronicle, "Motorcycle rider hospitalized after southeast Houston wreck," 2 Sep. 2019 Another driver told police his 2013 Dodge Challenger, ticketed by Rushing this year, has been in the shop since a 2017 wreck and is still not driveable. Cassandra Jaramillo, Dallas News, "Dallas police officer allegedly wrote fake tickets to parked cars," 27 June 2019 The battlefields looked like barbecue grills—not arrangements of discrete wrecks and craters, but greasy charcoal melted to the pavement. Nell Zink, Harper's magazine, "Marmalade Sky," 24 June 2019 Time had a circulation of 8 million, and the story was likely seen by even more people; that week’s issue also covered Ted Kennedy’s Chappaquiddick car wreck and the moon landing. Vince Guerrieri, Popular Mechanics, "Smoke on the Water: 50 Years After the Cuyahoga Fire," 20 June 2019 The train-wreck moment of the 2009 VMAs struck twin chords of fantasy and fear. Klara Auerbach, Washington Post, "How two superstars, four words, and 15 seconds of TV influenced a decade of pop culture," 14 Aug. 2019 But last year only 14,258 fans per game showed up to watch a team that finished 18 games above .500, a measure of apathy eclipsed only by the train-wreck Marlins to the east and the Rays' worst box-office showing in 13 years. Matt Bonesteel, courant.com, "Rays’ city-sharing plan has problems, but team’s owner calls it an ‘amazing idea’," 26 June 2019 But last year only 14,258 fans per game showed up to watch a team that finished 18 games above .500, a measure of apathy eclipsed only by the train-wreck Marlins to the east and the Rays’ worst box-office showing in 13 years. Matt Bonesteel, The Denver Post, "Rays’ city-sharing plan has problems, but team’s owner calls it an “amazing idea”," 26 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

After those search efforts didn’t turn up anything, on Dec. 15, 1898 The Globe reported that the steamship must have wrecked elsewhere. BostonGlobe.com, "It was the New England’s greatest steamship disaster at the time, and later became known as the “Titanic of New England.”," 17 Sep. 2019 Before Alabama and the NFL, Bozeman was an All-State offensive lineman as a junior in 2011 at Handley High School in Roanoke before a torn ACL wrecked his senior season. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al, "‘Work, grind’ pay off with starting spot for Baltimore’s Bradley Bozeman," 14 Sep. 2019 Against the Chargers showed last week how his speed can wreck a game plan. Joel A. Erickson, Indianapolis Star, "Insider: 13 things to watch in Colts vs. Titans game," 14 Sep. 2019 Bodies drenched in perspiration and wrecked by exhaustion speak louder than theoretical process. Carlos Aguilar, Los Angeles Times, "Review: Heaven, Earth and war collide in Alejandro Landes’ visceral ‘Monos’," 12 Sep. 2019 Texans Continued offensive line issues and the preseason injury to running back Lamar Miller (knee) and a brutal opening-month schedule (at New Orleans, vs. Jacksonville, at the Chargers, and vs. Carolina) will wreck Houston’s season. Ryan O’halloran, The Denver Post, "AFC Preview: Patriots still have Tom Brady, but conference could go through Chiefs or Chargers," 5 Sep. 2019 Eerie footage of the dive obtained by the BBC shows the Titanic’s rusting bow and parts of the ship’s wrecked hull. Fox News, "New Titanic images show the wreck’s 'shocking' deterioration," 22 Aug. 2019 Check-in Everything is awesome: Republican Vice President Mike Pence told the Detroit Economic Club that Democrats would wreck the economy if elected, MLive’s Malachi Barrett reports. cleveland.com, "Mike Pence says the economy will remain strong -- unless Democrats win in 2020: The Flyover," 20 Aug. 2019 Stew about how Brindley had potentially wrecked my chances of meeting Wheeler and Gavurin. David Obuchowski, Longreads, "Searching for The Sundays," 30 July 2019

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

Noun

12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for wreck

Noun

Middle English wrec, wrek, borrowed from Anglo-French wrek & Medieval Latin wreccum, borrowed from Old Norse *wrek, rek, going back to *wrek-a- "something driven," derivative of Germanic *wrekan- "to drive out" — more at wreak

Verb

Middle English wrekkyd (past participle), probably derivative of wrek wreck entry 1

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Dictionary Entries near wreck

wreathlet

wreath shell

wreathy

wreck

wreckage

wrecker

wreckfish

Statistics for wreck

Last Updated

22 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for wreck

The first known use of wreck was in the 12th century

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More Definitions for wreck

wreck

noun

English Language Learners Definition of wreck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a vehicle, airplane, etc., that has been badly damaged or destroyed
: a ruined or destroyed ship
US : an accident in which a car, airplane, train, etc., is badly damaged or destroyed

wreck

verb

English Language Learners Definition of wreck (Entry 2 of 2)

: to damage (something) so badly that it cannot be repaired
: to ruin or destroy (something)
: to destroy (a ship) by crashing it into something

wreck

noun
\ ˈrek How to pronounce wreck (audio) \

Kids Definition of wreck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : the remains (as of a ship or vehicle) after heavy damage usually by storm, collision, or fire
2 : a person who is very tired, ill, worried, or unhappy I'm a nervous wreck.
3 : the action of damaging or destroying something A lower speed limit will reduce wrecks.
4 : something in a state of ruin The house is a wreck.

wreck

verb
wrecked; wrecking

Kids Definition of wreck (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to damage or destroy by or as if by force or violence I wrecked my car.
2 : to bring to ruin or an end Our picnic was wrecked by the rain.

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More from Merriam-Webster on wreck

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wreck

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wreck

Spanish Central: Translation of wreck

Nglish: Translation of wreck for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wreck for Arabic Speakers

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