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[em-broil] /ɛmˈbrɔɪl/
verb (used with object)
to bring into discord or conflict; involve in contention or strife.
to throw into confusion; complicate.
Origin of embroil
1595-1605; < Middle French embrouiller, equivalent to em- em-1 + brouiller to broil2
Related forms
embroiler, noun
embroilment, noun
unembroiled, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for embroiled
  • Their contents quickly embroiled him in a controversy that has shaken the climate community and threatened his career.
  • At the same time, scientists and industry are embroiled in a controversy over whether the devices cause brain tumors.
  • Indeed, without a calendar, ancient history at this period would be embroiled in impenetrable confusion.
  • Before long, countries around the world were embroiled in the debate.
  • The world today is embroiled in an economic turmoil caused by the globalisation process.
  • Focus on your students and advancing your discipline, not on the low-level personalities in which you are embroiled.
  • Until then try to avoid becoming embroiled in issues and disputes counter to your tenure.
  • He will make mistakes, he will be embroiled in controversy.
  • And now they are embroiled in a little play of power about a key.
  • But this isn't the only scandal in which he and his party are currently embroiled.
British Dictionary definitions for embroiled


verb (transitive)
to involve (a person, oneself, etc) in trouble, conflict, or argument
to throw (affairs) into a state of confusion or disorder; complicate; entangle
Derived Forms
embroiler, noun
embroilment, noun
Word Origin
C17: from French embrouiller, from brouiller to mingle, confuse
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 embroiled



c.1600, "throw into disorder," from French embrouillier (cognate of Italian imbrogliare), from en- "in" (see en- (1)) + brouiller "confuse," from Old French brooillier (see broil (v.2)). Sense of "involve in a quarrel" is first attested c.1610. Related: Embroiled; embroiling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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