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menace

[men-is] /ˈmɛn ɪs/
noun
1.
something that threatens to cause evil, harm, injury, etc.; a threat:
Air pollution is a menace to health.
2.
a person whose actions, attitudes, or ideas are considered dangerous or harmful:
When he gets behind the wheel of a car, he's a real menace.
3.
an extremely annoying person.
verb (used with object), menaced, menacing.
4.
to utter or direct a threat against; threaten.
5.
to serve as a probable threat to; imperil.
verb (used without object), menaced, menacing.
6.
to express or serve as a threat.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English < Middle French < Latin minācia, equivalent to mināc- (stem of mināx) jutting out, threatening + -ia -ia
Related forms
menacer, noun
menacingly, adverb
nonmenacing, adjective
premenace, noun, verb (used with object), premenaced, premenacing.
unmenaced, adjective
unmenacing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for menacing
  • menacing body posture can be as threatening as a frightening facial expression, according to new research.
  • To some, the large-scale facility suggested a menacing ambition.
  • Even the menacing lion has a Gumby-like elasticity that declaws his potential to frighten little ones.
  • There's something menacing in their mirth.
  • Its squat, menacing form stares out over an empty wasteland.
  • Also, the world at last has the tools it needs to control this menacing disease.
  • Something cold and infinitely menacing comes from those silent corners.
  • You could make that thing look pretty menacing.
  • His lungs were damaged, and a host of potentially menacing infections festered in his system.
  • Fast-paced banjo twangs will make your heart race, as will the menacing glances from cyclists and bikers crowding the bar.
British Dictionary definitions for menacing

menace

/ˈmɛnɪs/
verb
1.
to threaten with violence, danger, etc
noun
2.
(literary) a threat or the act of threatening
3.
something menacing; a source of danger
4.
(informal) a nuisance
Derived Forms
menacer, noun
menacing, adjective
menacingly, adverb
Word Origin
C13: ultimately related to Latin minax threatening, from mināri to threaten
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for menacing
adj.

1540s, present participle adjective from menace (v.). Related: Menacingly.

menace

n.

c.1300, "declaration of hostile intent," also "act of threatening," from Old French menace "menace, threat" (9c.), from Vulgar Latin minacia "threat, menace" (also source of Spanish amenaza, Italian minaccia), singular of Latin minaciæ "threatening things," from minax (genitive minacis) "threatening," from minari "threaten, jut, project," from minæ "threats, projecting points," from PIE root *men- (2) "to project." Applied to persons from 1936.

v.

c.1300, from Old French menacer "threaten, urge" (11c.), Anglo-French manasser, from Vulgar Latin *minaciare "to threaten," from minacia (see menace (n.)). Related: Menaced; menacing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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