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taunt1

[tawnt, tahnt] /tɔnt, tɑnt/
verb (used with object)
1.
to reproach in a sarcastic, insulting, or jeering manner; mock.
2.
to provoke by taunts; twit.
noun
3.
an insulting gibe or sarcasm; scornful reproach or challenge.
4.
Obsolete. an object of insulting gibes or scornful reproaches.
Origin
1505-1515
1505-15; origin uncertain
Related forms
taunter, noun
tauntingly, adverb
untaunted, adjective
untaunting, adjective
untauntingly, adverb
Synonyms
1. censure, upbraid, flout, insult. 2, 3. jeer. See ridicule. 3. scoff, derision, insult, censure, ridicule.

taunt2

[tawnt, tahnt] /tɔnt, tɑnt/
adjective, Nautical
1.
tall, as a mast.
Origin
1490-1500; origin uncertain
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for taunt
  • Civil rights protesters did not use violence nor did they obnoxiously taunt their presumed antagonists.
  • Labs are made for carrying around something and the parrot would taunt it constantly.
  • The only thing that surprises me is that nobody's thrown the eugenicist taunt at anybody yet.
  • When someone is mentally ill, you don't take it personally, and you don't taunt them back and mock them and gang up against them.
  • They taunt the bull until it charges, at which points they stab the bull in the shoulders to anger it.
  • Schoolmates taunt him, and even his own family has begun to reject him.
  • Whether she was having an affair or not, taunt him with it.
  • Cruel stepsisters taunt the heroine and treat her unkindly.
  • If wildlife is encountered do not taunt, touch or feed, and enjoy watching from a safe distance.
  • Other voices counter that without financial access, innovation is a cruel taunt.
British Dictionary definitions for taunt

taunt1

/tɔːnt/
verb (transitive)
1.
to provoke or deride with mockery, contempt, or criticism
2.
to tease; tantalize
noun
3.
a jeering remark
4.
(archaic) the object of mockery
Derived Forms
taunter, noun
taunting, adjective
tauntingly, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from French phrase tant pour tant like for like, rejoinder

taunt2

/tɔːnt/
adjective
1.
(nautical) (of the mast or masts of a sailing vessel) unusually tall
Word Origin
C15: of uncertain origin
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 taunt
v.

1510s, possibly from Middle French tanter, tenter "to tempt, try, provoke," variant of tempter "to try" (see tempt). Or from Middle French tant pour tant "so much for so much, tit for tat," on notion of "sarcastic rejoinder." Related: Taunted; taunting.

n.

1520s, from taunt (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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