1

wrought

\ ˈrȯt \
Updated on: 14 May 2018

Definition of wrought

  • past tense and past participle of work

The Uses of wrought

Wrought may function as the past or the past participle form of the verb work. While not as common as it once was, this past-tense form still is encountered in such combinations as "wrought havoc." Since "wreak havoc" is also a familiar pairing, many people assume that wrought is the past tense of wreak, but the two are actually distinct. Although it still exists as a verb, wrought is more often used today as an adjective, a role in which is has a number of meanings. Most of these are found referring to things or materials which have been in some way worked by people (as in wrought iron or "carefully wrought prose"), but one sense ("deeply stirred") is typically used in describing emotions. When employed in this sense, wrought is often found paired with up (as in "he found himself wrought up over the news").


2

wrought

adjective

Definition of wrought

1 : worked into shape by artistry or effort
  • carefully wrought essays
2 : elaborately embellished : ornamented
3 : processed for use : manufactured
  • wrought silk
4 : beaten into shape by tools : hammered used of metals
5 : deeply stirred : excited often used with up
  • gets easily wrought up over nothing

Recent Examples of wrought from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wrought.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of wrought

Middle English, from past participle of worken to work

Other Handicraft Terms


WROUGHT Defined for English Language Learners

wrought

Definition of wrought for English Language Learners

  • : carefully formed or worked into shape


WROUGHT Defined for Kids

1

wrought

Definition of wrought for Students

  • past tense and past participle of work

2

wrought

adjective \ ˈrȯt \

Definition of wrought for Students

1 : beaten into shape by tools
  • wrought metals
2 : much too excited
  • … Miss Elson was on the verge of tears, she was so wrought up.
  • —Louise Fitzhugh, Harriet the Spy


Seen and Heard

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