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garrote

or garote, garotte, garrotte

[guh-roht, -rot] /gəˈroʊt, -ˈrɒt/
noun
1.
a method of capital punishment of Spanish origin in which an iron collar is tightened around a condemned person's neck until death occurs by strangulation or by injury to the spinal column at the base of the brain.
2.
the collarlike instrument used for this method of execution.
3.
strangulation or throttling, especially in the course of a robbery.
4.
an instrument, usually a cord or wire with handles attached at the ends, used for strangling a victim.
verb (used with object), garroted, garroting.
5.
to execute by the garrote.
6.
to strangle or throttle, especially in the course of a robbery.
Origin of garrote
1615-1625
1615-25; < Spanish garrote or French garrot packing-stick < ?
Related forms
garroter, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2016.
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Examples from the Web for garroter
Historical Examples
  • "I know the way," whispered the garroter, and a few gathered around him.

    The Wreck of the Titan Morgan Robertson
  • In his youth he had been a highwayman, and probably a garroter.

    The Popham Colony William Frederick Poole
  • He was a garroter by profession, accustomed to rely upon his fists only for the exchange of amenities.

  • A garroter lay on the roof ready to entangle me with his noose if I should escape the dagger of the old hag.

    Dracula's Guest Bram Stoker
  • He is a harmless enough fellow, Parker by name, a garroter by trade, and a remarkable performer upon the jew's-harp.

    The Return of Sherlock Holmes Arthur Conan Doyle
  • He is a harmless enough fellow, Parker by name, a garroter by trade, and a remarkable performer upon the Jew's harp.

    The Return of Sherlock Holmes Arthur Conan Doyle
  • One hand of the garroter was on his throat, the other was busily rifling his pockets.

Word Origin and History for garroter

garrote

n.

also garrotte, 1620s, "Spanish method of capital punishment by strangulation," from Spanish garrote "stick for twisting cord," of unknown origin, perhaps from Old French guaroc "club, stick, rod, shaft of a crossbow," probably ultimately Celtic, but possibly from Frankish *wrokkan "to twist" (cf. Middle Dutch wroken "to twist").

I have no hesitation in pronouncing death by the garrot, at once the most manly, and the least offensive to the eye. [Major John Richardson, "British Legion," 1837]

v.

"to execute with a garrote," 1851, from garrote (n.); sense of "choke and then rob" is from 1852. Related: Garotted; garotting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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9
10
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