Definition of amok in English:

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Pronunciation: /əˈmɒk/
(also amuck)


(in phrase run amok)
Behave uncontrollably and disruptively: stone-throwing anarchists were running amok
More example sentences
  • Countries around the world are facing the problem of anarchists running amok.
  • Dozens of riot police ran amok in a housing complex here on Tuesday following a minor accident involving an officer and a local resident, leaving five people wounded.
  • Do staff members try to make up for the lack of rampaging aliens by occasionally running amok themselves?
go berserk, get out of control, rampage, run riot, riot, rush wildly/madly about, go on the rampage;
storm, charge;
behave like a maniac, behave wildly, behave uncontrollably;
become violent, become destructive;
go mad, go crazy, go insane
informal steam, raise hell
North American informal go postal


Mid 17th century: via Portuguese amouco, from Malay amok 'rushing in a frenzy'. Early use was as a noun denoting a Malay in a homicidal frenzy.

  • If someone runs amok they rush about behaving uncontrollably and disruptively. The word amok comes via Portuguese from a Malay word amuk meaning ‘fighting furiously’ or ‘rushing in a frenzy’. It was first used in English in the 17th century, referring to a Malay person in a murderous frenzy after taking opium.

Words that rhyme with amok

ad hoc, Bangkok, baroque, belle époque, bloc, block, bock, brock, chock, chock-a-block, clock, doc, dock, floc, flock, frock, hock, hough, interlock, jock, knock, langue d'oc, lock, Locke, Médoc, mock, nock, o'clock, pock, post hoc, roc, rock, schlock, shock, smock, sock, Spock, stock, wok, yapok

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: amok

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