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ambush

[am-boo sh] /ˈæm bʊʃ/
noun, Also, ambushment
1.
an act or instance of lying concealed so as to attack by surprise:
The highwaymen waited in ambush near the road.
2.
an act or instance of attacking unexpectedly from a concealed position.
3.
the concealed position itself:
They fired from ambush.
4.
those who attack suddenly and unexpectedly from a concealed position.
verb (used with object)
5.
to attack from ambush.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; (v.) Middle English enbuss(h)en < Middle French embuschier to place men in ambush, literally, to set in the woods, equivalent to em- im-1 + busch- (< Vulgar Latin *busca wood, forest < Germanic *busk- heavy stick) + -ier infinitive suffix; (noun) earlier enbusshe < Middle French embusche, derivative of the v.
Related forms
ambusher, noun
ambushlike, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for ambushed
  • But the outcome can be a job candidate's feeling bemused and ambushed.
  • Over the final years of his life, my father ambushed me with other, less predictable insights as well.
  • Some sailors ambushed behind wood-piles began shooting.
  • The two were returning to the capital from a weekend in the countryside when leftist guerrillas ambushed their motorcade.
  • Writer visits the site where a human was ambushed and killed by a tiger, and another site where an elk was ambushed and killed.
  • Yahoo executives are ambushed with tough questions.
  • Each time, a handful of eager scouts got a green light from the top, only to be ambushed by everyone else along the way.
  • For the first time, the body realizes it has been ambushed.
  • The insect hid in hippo dung, then ambushed the fish, snatching it with raptorial forelegs.
  • Five years ago he was ambushed and machine-gunned while driving his car.
British Dictionary definitions for ambushed

ambush

/ˈæmbʊʃ/
noun
1.
the act of waiting in a concealed position in order to launch a surprise attack
2.
a surprise attack from such a position
3.
the concealed position from which such an attack is launched
4.
the person or persons waiting to launch such an attack
verb
5.
to lie in wait (for)
6.
(transitive) to attack suddenly from a concealed position
Derived Forms
ambusher, noun
Word Origin
C14: from Old French embuschier to position in ambush, from em-im- + -buschier, from busche piece of firewood, probably of Germanic origin; see bush1
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 ambushed

ambush

v.

c.1300, from Old French embuscher (13c., Modern French embûcher) "to lay an ambush," from en- "in" + busch "wood," apparently from Frankish *busk "bush, woods" (see bush (n.)). Related: Ambushed; ambushing.

n.

late 15c., embushe, from the English verb or from Middle French embusche, from Old French embuscher (see ambush (v.)). Earlier was ambushment (late 14c.). Figurative use by 1590s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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ambushed in the Bible

Joshua at the capture of Ai lay in ambush, and so deceived the inhabitants that he gained an easy victory (Josh. 8:4-26). Shechem was taken in this manner (Judg. 9:30-45. Comp. Jer. 51:12).

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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