Definition of barbarize in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈbɑːbərʌɪz/
(also barbarise)


[with object] (usually as adjective barbarizing)
Cause to become savage or uncultured: the barbarizing effect of four decades of rock ‘n’ roll
More example sentences
  • Kirkeby evidently was not above barbarizing them with crude strokes and muddy patches of overpainting when they threatened to become too accessible.
  • The army itself was barbarized and turned into an instrument of sheer oppression.
  • Manners are what vex or soothe, corrupt or purify, exalt or debase, barbarize or refine us, by a constant, steady, uniform, insensible operation, like that of the air we breathe in.



Pronunciation: /bɑːbərʌɪˈzeɪʃ(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • We can observe a barbarization on the part of the Palestinians, in the form of suicide bombers, forcing the IDF's response to become barbaric as well, such as in the assault on the Jenin Refugee Camp.
  • Is it too much to suggest that the tough line policies of the last decade have led to a criminalisation or barbarisation of parts of the ‘legitimate’ economy?’
  • The army identified wholeheartedly with the war against Bolshevism on the eastern front, and was deeply implicated in the atrocities to which the front's barbarization gave rise.


Late Middle English (in the sense 'speak using barbarisms'): from late Latin barbarizare, from Greek barbarizein 'speak like a foreigner'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: bar|bar¦ize

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