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[fuh-ros-i-tee] /fəˈrɒs ɪ ti/
a ferocious quality or state; savage fierceness.
Origin of ferocity
1600-10; < Latin ferōcitās, equivalent to ferōc-, stem of ferōx ferocious + -itās -ity
Related forms
nonferocity, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for ferocity
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Historical Examples
  • She knew the ferocity of the panther very well, and trembled lest the sleeper should move, or twitch a muscle.

    The Heart of the Ancient Wood Charles G. D. Roberts
  • All ferocity must be misinterpretation of the divine law of harmony and mutual help.

  • The Tasmanian Devil is said to be one of the most ferocious of animals, and to express its ferocity by a "yelling growl."

  • The struggle was deadly, but the numbers and ferocity of the pirates prevailed.

  • Right and left he struck in a reckless fume of ferocity, which spoke of unreasoning fights in worlds of savage firstlings.

    The Promise James B. Hendryx
Word Origin and History for ferocity

c.1600, from French férocité, from Latin ferocitatem (nominative ferocitas) "fierceness," from ferocis, oblique case of ferox "wild, bold, courageous, warlike, fierce," literally "wild-looking," a derivative of ferus "wild" (see fierce) + -ox, -ocem (genitive -ocis), a suffix meaning "looking or appearing" (cognate with Greek ops "eye, sight").

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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