Definition of terrify in English:


Syllabification: ter·ri·fy
Pronunciation: /ˈterəˌfī

verb (terrifies, terrifying, terrified)

[with object]
Cause to feel extreme fear: the thought terrifies me he is terrified of spiders [with object]: she was terrified he would drop her (as adjective terrifying) the terrifying events of the past few weeks
More example sentences
  • The parents are terrified, their fears not at all eased by being referred to a brain surgeon.
  • Funny how I can watch all sorts of horror movies for hours and not get scared while that movie and its sequel terrify me!
  • Violent crime here is mercifully rare, despite some terrifying recent incidents.
petrify, horrify, frighten, scare, scare stiff, scare/frighten to death, scare/frighten the living daylights out of, scare/frighten the life out of, scare/frighten someone out of their wits, scare witless, strike terror into, put the fear of God into;
terrorize, paralyze, transfix
informal scare the pants off, scare the bejesus out of


late 16th century: from Latin terrificare, from terrificus 'frightening' (see terrific).



More example sentences
  • Squirt taught Pippi everything he knew about wrestling, and she'd probably make a good terrifier of rodents if given a chance.
  • So again we ask, how can it be said that Saturn, the supreme terrifier among the planets, can be your greatest friend?
  • More ‘Twilight Zone’ than terrifier, the film pushes along in a quietly outlandish journey into the bizarre that leaves you delving deeper for more.


Pronunciation: /ˈterəˌfī-iNGlē/
[as submodifier]: the bombs are terrifyingly accurate
More example sentences
  • Viewers get terrifyingly close to the action with giant interactive models, including a five-metre shark moving slowly and sensing its victims.
  • The film works because it is handled on a small personal scale, which makes the gravity and the drama terrifyingly palpable.
  • We have seen pictures of people who had little, and who have suddenly and terrifyingly lost everything.

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