verb (petrifies, petrifying, petrified)[with object]
- 1Make (someone) so frightened that they are unable to move or think: his icy controlled quietness petrified herMore example sentences
terrified, terror-stricken, horrified, scared/frightened out of one's wits, scared/frightened to deathterrify, horrify, frighten, scare, scare/frighten to death, scare/frighten the living daylights out of, scare/frighten the life out of, strike terror into, put the fear of God into; paralyze, transfix• informal scare the pants off, scare the bejesus out of
- You are petrified of letting people see how vulnerable you can be and have a very bad case of stage fright.
- I am petrified of heights and last year did an abseil which I found really scary.
- But I'm also petrified of joblessness, insecurity, and drastic changes happening all at once.
- 2Change (organic matter) into a stony concretion by encrusting or replacing its original substance with a calcareous, siliceous, or other mineral deposit.More example sentences
- The chemical components used to artificially petrify wood can be found in natural settings around volcanoes and within sedimentary strata.
- As the ham was petrified within ‘historic time’, it was excluded on the basis of the first of these definitions from being called a fossil.
- The charcoal had kept the hull dry and the salt had petrified it.
late Middle English: from French pétrifier, from medieval Latin petrificare, from Latin petra 'rock', from Greek.