Word of the Day : June 30, 2018

lambaste

play
verb lam-BAYST

Definition

1 : to assault violently : beat, whip

2 : to attack verbally : censure

Did You Know?

The origins of lambaste are somewhat uncertain, but the word was most likely formed by combining the verbs lam and baste, both of which mean "to beat severely." (The baste functioning here is unrelated to either the sewing or cooking one.) (Incidentally, lambaste can also be spelled lambast, despite the modern spelling of the verb baste.) Some other synonyms of lambaste include pummel, thrash, and pound. Pummel suggests beating with one's fists ("the boxer ruthlessly pummeled his opponent"). Pound also suggests heavy blows, though perhaps not quite so much as pummel, and may imply a continuous rain of blows ("she pounded on the door"). Thrash means to strike repeatedly and thoroughly as if with a whip and is often used figuratively to mean "to defeat decisively or severely" ("the team thrashed their opponent 44-0").


Examples

The coach loudly lambasted Danny in front of the whole team for showing up late yet again.

"The governor of Latvia's central bank, a pillar of Europe's financial system for years and a zealous champion of austerity, has long been lambasted by his critics as a heartless enforcer of economic dogma." — Andrew Higgins, The New York Times, 30 Apr. 2018



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