- 1End the existence of (something) by damaging or attacking it: the room had been destroyed by fireMore example sentences
demolish, knock down, pull down, tear down, level, raze (to the ground), fell, dismantle, break up, wreck, ruin, smash, shatter, crash, blast, blow up, blow to bits/pieces, dynamite, explode, bomb, torpedospoil, ruin, wreck, disfigure, blight, mar, blemish, impair, flaw, deface, scar, injure, harm, devastate, damage, lay waste, ravage, wreak havoc on• literary waste• rare disfeaturewreck, ruin, spoil, disrupt, undo, upset, play havoc with, make a mess of, put an end to, end, bring to an end, put a stop to, terminate, prevent, frustrate, blight, crush, quell, quash, dash, scotch, shatter, vitiate, blast, devastate, demolish, sabotage, torpedo; upset someone's apple cart, cook someone's goose• informal mess up, muck up, screw up, louse up, foul up, make a hash of, do in, put paid to, put the lid on, put the kibosh on, do for, scupper, dish, stymie, queer, nix, banjax, blow a hole inBritish • informal throw a spanner in the works of, mullerNorth American • informal throw a monkey wrench in the works of• archaic bring to naught
- Attack operations can also contribute to preventing future attacks by destroying launchers after firing but before reuse.
- Mr Browne said if a plantation is destroyed or damaged by fire, the incident should be reported to the nearest Garda station and to the Forest Service.
- Mr Roebuck said the latest car fire had destroyed one vehicle and damaged two others parked near to it.
- 1.1Ruin (someone) emotionally or spiritually: he has been determined to destroy herMore example sentences
- Not content to destroy us emotionally, physically and spiritually, they also had to take us down calligraphically too.
- Prostitution is a system of slavery that emotionally, spiritually and physically destroys women and girls.
- Hugo's deep-seated jealousy of O drives him to set in motion a plan to destroy him by ruining his relationship with Desi.
- 1.2Defeat (someone) utterly: Northants have the batting to destroy anyoneMore example sentences
annihilate, wipe out, obliterate, wipe off the face of the earth, wipe off the map, eliminate, eradicate, liquidate, extinguish, finish off, erase, root out, extirpate; kill, slaughter, massacre, butcher, exterminate, decimateNorth American • informal wastebeat hollow, win a resounding victory over, annihilate, vanquish, drub, trounce, rout, crush, give someone a drubbing, overwhelm• informal lick, thrash, hammer, clobber, paste, give someone a pasting, whip, pound, pulverize, demolish, wipe the floor with, take to the cleaners, make mincemeat of, slaughter, murder, massacre, crucify, flatten, turn inside out, run rings aroundUS • informal own
- And that is ‘to chase the enemy to the ends of the earth and utterly destroy him’.
- War, its violence previously contained within law, spilled out to an attempt to utterly destroy the enemy.
- No matter how many times the CPU seemingly cheated, or a friend managed to utterly destroy me using a lameass starter deck, I kept putting the game back in.
- 1.3Kill (a sick, savage, or unwanted animal) by humane means: their terrier was destroyed after the attackMore example sentences
- The spirit of the Whitehall farce is demonstrated in an incident ten days ago when a Cumbrian farmer was about to witness eight slaughtermen start to destroy his sheep flock.
- She took the dog and had it destroyed by the Humane Society.
- The government announced last week that it planned to destroy all sheep and pigs within three kilometers of any confirmed outbreak in those areas.
Middle English: from Old French destruire, based on Latin destruere, from de- (expressing reversal) + struere 'build'.