intimidate

intimidate, cow, bulldoze, bully, browbeat are comparable when meaning to frighten or coerce by frightening means into submission or obedience.
Intimidate primarily implies a making timid or fearful, but it often suggests a display or application (as of force or learning) so as to cause fear or a sense of inferiority and a consequent submission
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a musket was, therefore, fired over them, but . . . they seemed rather to be provoked than intimidatedCook

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he wasn't lazy, he wasn't a fool, and he meant to be honest; but he was intimidated by that miserable sort of departmental life— Cather

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the Democrats were attempting to impeach President Grant for alleged misuse of the military to intimidate voters— Woodward

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Cow implies reduction to a state where the spirit is broken or all courage is lost
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he flung them back, commanded them, cowed them with his hard, intelligent eyes, like a tamer among beasts— Arthur Morrison

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youthful hearers who might be disillusioned or cowed by recent history— J. M. Brown

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Bulldoze implies an intimidating or an overcoming of resistance usually by forceful demanding or urging or by implied threats
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a mean, stingy, bulldozing poseur with woodchuck whiskers— Pegler

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through the sheer strength of his reputation and the force of his will bulldozing them into making loans— F. L. Allen

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some irate customer who had come in to bulldoze me . . . and had tried to bully me with mere words— White

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Bully implies intimidation through overbearing, swaggering threats or insults, and in schoolboy use it usually suggests bulldozing of small boys by those who are larger or more aggressive
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suppose the cabman bullies you for double fare— Shaw

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I know what you're going to call me . . . but I am not to be bullied by words— L.P. Smith

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Browbeat implies a cowing through arrogant, scornful, contemptuous, or insolent treatment
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he browbeat the informers against us, and treated their evidence with . . . little favor— Fielding

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who saw my old kind parents . . . too much trustful . . . cheated, browbeaten, stripped and starved, cast out into the kennel— Browning

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Analogous words: terrorize, terrify, *frighten: hector, hound, ride, chivy, *bait, badger: coerce, *force, compel, constrain, oblige
Contrasted words: *coax, wheedle, cajole, blandish: persuade, prevail, *induce

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • intimidate — in·tim·i·date /in ti mə ˌdāt/ vt dat·ed, dat·ing 1: to make timid or fearful; esp: to compel or deter by or as if by threats see also coercion 2: to engage in the crime of intimidating (as a witness, juror, public officer in the performance of… …   Law dictionary

  • intimidate — (v.) 1640s, from M.L. intimidatus, pp. of intimidare to frighten, intimidate, from L. in in (see IN (Cf. in ) (2)) + timidus fearful (see TIMID (Cf. timid)). Related: Intimidated; intimidating …   Etymology dictionary

  • Intimidate — In*tim i*date, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Intimidated}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Intimidating}.] [LL. intimidatus, p. p. of intimidare to frighten; pref. in in + timidus fearful, timid: cf. F. intimider. See {Timid}.] To make timid or fearful; to inspire of… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intimidate — [v] frighten, threaten alarm, appall, awe, badger, bait, bludgeon, bluster, bowl over*, browbeat*, buffalo*, bulldoze*, bully, chill, coerce, compel, constrain, cow*, daunt, dishearten, dismay, dispirit, disquiet, dragoon, enforce, force, hound* …   New thesaurus

  • intimidate — ► VERB ▪ frighten or overawe, especially so as to coerce into doing something. DERIVATIVES intimidation noun intimidator noun intimidatory adjective. ORIGIN Latin intimidare make timid …   English terms dictionary

  • intimidate — [in tim′ə dāt΄] vt. intimidated, intimidating [< ML intimidatus, pp. of intimidare, to make afraid < L in , in + timidus, afraid, TIMID] 1. to make timid; make afraid; daunt 2. to force or deter with threats or violence; cow intimidation n …   English World dictionary

  • intimidate — verb ADVERB ▪ physically, psychologically ▪ Dissidents were physically intimidated, threatened, and harshly interrogated. VERB + INTIMIDATE ▪ try to PREPOSITION …   Collocations dictionary

  • intimidate — 01. Toby is able to [intimidate] the other children because he is so much bigger than them. 02. It is very [intimidating] to speak in front of an audience, especially when you are doing it in a foreign language. 03. With her great intellect and… …   Grammatical examples in English

  • intimidate — v. (D; tr.) to intimidate into (to intimidate smb. into doing smt.) * * * [ɪn tɪmɪdeɪt] (D; tr.) to intimidate into (to intimidate smb. into doing smt.) …   Combinatory dictionary

  • intimidate — UK [ɪnˈtɪmɪdeɪt] / US [ɪnˈtɪmɪˌdeɪt] verb [transitive] Word forms intimidate : present tense I/you/we/they intimidate he/she/it intimidates present participle intimidating past tense intimidated past participle intimidated a) to deliberately make …   English dictionary

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