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electrocute

[ih-lek-truh-kyoot] /ɪˈlɛk trəˌkyut/
verb (used with object), electrocuted, electrocuting.
1.
to kill by electricity.
2.
to execute (a criminal) by electricity, as in an electric chair.
Origin
1885-1890
1885-90, Americanism; electro- + (exe)cute
Related forms
electrocution, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for electrocution
  • First, it was said that she had died from electrocution.
  • Most electric fences are designed to interrupt the flow when they are touched thereby decreasing the likelihood of electrocution.
British Dictionary definitions for electrocution

electrocute

/ɪˈlɛktrəˌkjuːt/
verb (transitive)
1.
to kill as a result of an electric shock
2.
(US) to execute in the electric chair
Derived Forms
electrocution, noun
Word Origin
C19: from electro- + (exe)cute
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 electrocution
n.

1890; see electrocute + -ion. Meaning "any death by electricity" is from 1940.

electrocute

v.

"execute by electricity," 1889, American English, from electro- + back half of execute. The method first was used Aug. 6, 1890, in New York state, on William Kemmler, convicted of the murder of his common-law wife. Sense involving accidental death is first recorded 1909. Electric chair is also first recorded 1889, which is when the first one was introduced in New York state as a humane alternative to hanging. Related: Electrocuted; electrocuting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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