conquer


conquer
conquer, defeat, vanquish, overcome, surmount, subdue, subjugate, reduce, overthrow, rout, beat, lick all mean to get the better of or to bring into subjection whether by the exercise of force or of strategy. Conquer and defeat are perhaps the most general.
Defeat usually signifies merely the fact of getting the better of or winning against and may imply no more than a temporary checking or frustrating
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the enemy were successfully defeated

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he defeated the older man in the tennis tournament

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a distortion of the news picture which defeats the whole purpose to which our system is committed— Mott

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Conquer, however, usually implies a large and significant action (as of a large force in war) or an action involving an all-inclusive effort and a more or less permanent result
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Caesar conquered most of Gaul

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culture conquers more surely than the sword— A. M. Young

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science has conquered yellow fever— Amer. Guide Series: La.

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the 21-year-old Englishman who conquered the most dangerous river in the world— N. Y. Times Book Rev.

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Vanquish suggests a significant action of a certain dignity usually in the defeat of a person rather than a thing and usually carrying the suggestion of complete defeat
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to overthrow the enemy solely by his own strength—to vanquish him solely by his own effort— Hearn

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vanquish an opponent in a championship match at tennis

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Overcome usually implies an opposing, more or less fixed obstacle to be dealt with and a high degree of effectiveness in dealing therewith whether by direct conflict or perhaps more often by indirect means (as evasion or substitution)
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overcome the enemy's shore fortifications

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overcoming difficult legal obstacles— Americana Annuai

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using the airlift to overcome the blockade— Collier's Yr. Bk.

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overcome a speech defect

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Surmount, like overcome, implies an opposing, more or less fixed obstacle but carries the idea of surpassing or exceeding rather than overcoming in face-to-face conflict
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the technical problems to be surmountedK. F. Mather

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many petty faults which he is apparently unable to surmountNew Republic

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Simon . . . has an inner force that is capable of surmounting conditions— Malcolm Cowley

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Subdue, subjugate, and reduce all throw emphasis upon the condition of subjection resulting from defeat
Subdue signifies to bring under control by or as if by overpowering
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in 1803 Commodore Edward Preble subdued the Barbary Coast pirates— Am er. Guide Series: Me.

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in their last century of conquest they almost succeeded in subduing the whole island— Blanshard

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all violence or recklessness of feeling has been finally subduedCather

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the wilderness had been almost completely subdued by cutting down the forests and building roads and cities

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Subjugate signifies to bring into and keep in subjection, often as a slave is in subjection
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authoritarian reaction which overwhelmed Italy and subjugated it for two centuries— R. A. Hall

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the heart and imagination subjugating the senses and understanding— Arnold

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Reduce signifies surrender and submission but usually of a town or fortress under attack or siege
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the town and finally the province were reduced by the invaders

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Overthrow is much like overcome but carries the strong idea of disaster to the overthrown
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overthrow the established government by violence

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get swiftly through the field of fire and pierce and overthrow the enemy lines— Wintringham

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a huge body of evidence . .. completely overthrows the older view— Comfort

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Rout always suggests a defeat so complete as to cause flight or the complete dispersion of the opposition
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twelve hundred French and a large force of Indians . . . were intercepted . . . and utterly routed, only 200 of the French escaping capture or death— Bingham

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Weaver with the assistance of two other gunboats routed a large force of Texas cavalry when they attacked Fort Butler— Bolandery

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Beat and lick are characteristic of a less formal style of expression or level of usage than the preceding verbs. Both come close to defeat in meaning but distinctively beat (see also BEAT 1) is rather neutral in this sense, except that occasionally it may imply the finality though not the scope of vanquish
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the local ball team won the state championship by beating all comers

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while lick usually implies a complete humbling or reduction to impotency and ineffectiveness of the one defeated
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the fighter must be confirmed in the belief that he can lick anybody in the world— Liebling

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with the problem growing, the railroads have redoubled their efforts to lick it— Faulkner

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Analogous words: *frustrate, thwart, foil, circumvent, outwit, baffle, balk
Contrasted words: surrender, submit, capitulate (see corresponding nouns at SURRENDER): *yield, succumb, bow, cave

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Conquer — Студийный альбом Soulfly Дата выпуска 29 июля 2008 Записан The Porch Recording …   Википедия

  • Conquer — Con quer (k[o^][ng] k[ e]r), v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Conquered}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Conquering}.] [OF. conquerre, F. conqu[ e]rir, fr. L. conquirere, quisitum, to seek or search for, to bring together, LL., to conquer; con + quaerere to seek. See… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Conquer — Con quer (k[o^][ng] k[ e]r), v. i. To gain the victory; to overcome; to prevail. [1913 Webster] He went forth conquering and to conquer. Rev. vi. 2. [1913 Webster] The champions resolved to conquer or to die. Waller. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Conquer — may refer to: Conquer Online, a MMORPG developed by TQ Digital Entertainment Conquer (album), an album from Soulfly Conquest (disambiguation) This disambiguation page lists articles associated with the same title. If an internal li …   Wikipedia

  • conquer — [käŋ′kər, kän′kər] vt. [ME conqueren < OFr conquerre < VL * conquaerere (for L conquirere), to search for, procure < L com , intens. + quaerere, to seek, acquire] 1. to get possession or control of by or as by winning a war 2. to… …   English World dictionary

  • Conquer — Album par Soulfly Sortie Juillet 2008 Enregistrement Indigo Ranch Studios, Malibu, Californie Durée 57:22 Genre Nu metal, Groove metal …   Wikipédia en Français

  • conquer — c.1200, cunquearen, from O.Fr. conquerre conquer, defeat, vanquish, from V.L. *conquaerere (for L. conquirere) to search for, procure by effort, win, from L. com , intensive prefix (see COM (Cf. com )), + quaerere to seek, acquire (see QUERY (Cf …   Etymology dictionary

  • conquer — [v1] defeat, overcome beat, bring to knees*, checkmate, circumvent, clobber, control, cream*, crush, discomfit, drub, foil, frustrate, get the better of*, humble, lick, master, outwit, overmaster, overpower, override, overthrow, prevail, quell,… …   New thesaurus

  • conquer — index beat (defeat), defeat, demean (make lower), occupy (take possession), overcome (surmount) …   Law dictionary

  • Conquer — Nom porté dans le Morbihan. Variante : Conqueur. Sens incertain. Le rapprochement avec la ville du Conquet (Konk en breton) semble douteux. A. Deshayes (voir bibliographie) signale que Dom Le Pelletier avait noté le mot conk , proposant entre… …   Noms de famille


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