Share this entry

Share this page

torturous

Syllabification: tor·tur·ous
Pronunciation: /ˈtôrCH(ə)rəs
 
/

Definition of torturous in English:

adjective

Characterized by, involving, or causing excruciating pain or suffering: a torturous eight weeks in their prison camp
More example sentences
  • On the other hand, however, he wouldn't have to continue with that torturous pain anymore.
  • We must all act now, before it is too late to stop our horses and ponies suffering long, torturous journeys to their deaths in foreign abattoirs.
  • Agonizing, torturous hours were lost as he waited outside of Laura's chambers.

Origin

late 15th century: from Anglo-Norman French, from torture 'torture'.

Usage

Tortuous and torturous have different core meanings. Tortuous meansfull of twists and turns’ or ‘devious, circuitous’: both paths were tortuous and strewn with boulders. Torturous is derived from torture and means ‘involving torture or excruciating pain’. Torturous should be reserved for agonized suffering; it is not a fancy word for ‘painful’ or ‘discomforting,’ as in I found the concert torturous because of the music’s volume.

Derivatives

torturously

1
adverb
a torturously hot day
More example sentences
  • As I'm towed - we're hoping the boat's movement will attract a nearby pod of whales for me to see - the ice-chilled waters of Hudson Bay torturously infiltrate my wetsuit.
  • Rose, a young woman abducted and torturously stashed in earthquake ruins last June, was forced to flee to the countryside after her kidnappers made a second attempt.
  • The charitable institution for poor or orphaned girls of clergyman, run by Mr. Brocklehurst, almost starved it occupants, and was torturously strick.

Words that rhyme with torturous

vulturousPandarus

Definition of torturous in:

Share this entry

Share this page

 

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

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

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove ads and access premium resources

Word of the day terpsichorean
Pronunciation: ˌtərpsikəˈrēən
adjective
of or relating to dancing