Definition of crucify in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈkro͞osəˌfī/

verb (crucifies, crucifying, crucified)

[with object]
1Put (someone) to death by nailing or binding them to a cross, especially as an ancient punishment: two thieves were crucified with Jesus
More example sentences
  • Now it is well known, both from remains of victims of crucifixion and from cadaver experiments, that people were not crucified with nails through the palms.
  • Christian tradition records that Andrew was crucified on an x-shaped cross.
  • Some may think that Jesus' allusion to picking up our cross daily is an anachronism since he had not yet been crucified, but the cross was already well-known to the Jews as a hated Roman instrument of execution.
nail to a cross;
execute, put to death, kill
1.1Cause anguish to (someone): she’d been crucified by his departure
More example sentences
  • He was crucifying people who were recently widowed in a most horrific way, people who were still in the grips of devastation.
devastate, crush, shatter, cut to the quick, wound, pain, harrow, torture, torment, agonize, persecute
2 informal Criticize (someone) severely and unrelentingly: our fans would crucify us if we lost
More example sentences
  • Lest I be crucified by fans of the series, I get why his character is that way.
  • Critical feedback isn't some vicious plot concocted to crucify you - it can be used constructively.
  • In a major performance in 1983 in a prominent American city, the critic reviewing the concert crucified the entire recital.



Pronunciation: /ˈkro͞osəˌfīər/
Example sentences
  • As the world's other empires have collapsed, the structures have stood out ever more clearly for what they are: the vestigial remnants, not of the crucified, but of the crucifiers.
  • Incidentally, who knew the Greeks were crucifiers?
  • He argues that the crucifiers of Christ were not evil in crucifying Jesus.


Middle English: from Old French crucifier, from late Latin crucifigere, from Latin crux, cruc- 'cross' + figere 'fix'. Compare with crucifix.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: cru·ci·fy

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.