frighten

[frahyt-n]
verb (used with object)
1.
to make afraid or fearful; throw into a fright; terrify; scare.
2.
to drive (usually followed by away, off, etc.) by scaring: to frighten away pigeons from the roof.
verb (used without object)
3.
to become frightened: a timid child who frightens easily.

Origin:
1660–70; fright + -en1

frightenable, adjective
frightener, noun
frighteningly, adverb
nonfrightening, adjective
nonfrighteningly, adverb
overfrighten, verb
unfrightening, adjective


1. shock, startle, dismay, intimidate. Frighten, alarm, scare, terrify, terrorize, appall all mean to arouse fear in people or animals. To frighten is to shock with sudden, startling, but usually short-lived fear, especially that arising from the apprehension of physical harm: to frighten someone by a sudden noise. To alarm is to arouse the feelings through the realization of some imminent or unexpected danger: to alarm someone by a scream. To scare is to frighten, often without the presence of real danger: Horror movies really scare me. To terrify is to strike with violent, overwhelming, or paralyzing fear: to terrify a city by lawless acts. To terrorize is to terrify in a general, continued, systematic manner, either wantonly or in order to gain control: His marauding armies terrorized the countryside. To appall is to overcome or confound by dread, dismay, shock, or horror: The suffering caused by the earthquake appalled him.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
frighten (ˈfraɪtən)
 
vb
1.  to cause fear in; terrify; scare
2.  to drive or force to go (away, off, out, in, etc) by making afraid
 
'frightened
 
adj
 
'frightening
 
adj
 
'frighteningly
 
adv

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

frighten
1660s, from fright + -en (1). Related: Frightened; frightening.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Few things are more frightening than knowing you live too far away from the
  nearest doctor.
There is no doubt that this is a frightening moment.
Menacing body posture can be as threatening as a frightening facial expression,
  according to new research.
Lightning is beautiful, sometimes frightening and often destructive.
Synonyms
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