Synonyms of heckle

to attack repeatedly with mean put-downs or insults
  • the players were heckled by disappointed fans

Synonyms for heckle

Words Related to heckle

Phrases Synonymous with heckle

See the Dictionary Definition 

Frequently Asked Questions About heckle

How is the word heckle distinct from other similar verbs?

Some common synonyms of heckle are badger, bait, chivy, hector, and hound. While all these words mean "to harass by efforts to break down," heckle implies persistent annoying or belligerent interruptions of a speaker.

drunks heckled the stand-up comic

Where would badger be a reasonable alternative to heckle?

The meanings of badger and heckle largely overlap; however, badger implies pestering so as to drive a person to confusion or frenzy.

badgered her father for a car

When might bait be a better fit than heckle?

While in some cases nearly identical to heckle, bait implies wanton cruelty or delight in persecuting a helpless victim.

baited the chained dog

When can chivy be used instead of heckle?

The words chivy and heckle can be used in similar contexts, but chivy suggests persecution by teasing or nagging.

chivied the new student mercilessly

When is hector a more appropriate choice than heckle?

The synonyms hector and heckle are sometimes interchangeable, but hector carries an implication of bullying and domineering.

football players hectored by their coach

When would hound be a good substitute for heckle?

Although the words hound and heckle have much in common, hound implies unrelenting pursuit and harassing.

hounded by creditors

Learn More About heckle

Time Traveler for heckle

Time Traveler

The first known use of heckle was circa 1825

See more words from the same year

Thesaurus Entries Near heckle




See More Nearby Entries 

Cite this Entry

“Heckle.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More from Merriam-Webster on heckle

Nglish: Translation of heckle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of heckle for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!