Try Our Apps


What is the origin of "December"?


[mawr-tuh-fahy] /ˈmɔr təˌfaɪ/
verb (used with object), mortified, mortifying.
to humiliate or shame, as by injury to one's pride or self-respect.
to subjugate (the body, passions, etc.) by abstinence, ascetic discipline, or self-inflicted suffering.
Pathology. to affect with gangrene or necrosis.
verb (used without object), mortified, mortifying.
to practice mortification or disciplinary austerities.
Pathology. to undergo mortification; become gangrened or necrosed.
Origin of mortify
1350-1400; Middle English mortifien < Middle French mortifier < Late Latin mortificāre to put to death, equivalent to Latin morti- (stem of mors) death + -ficāre -fy
Related forms
mortifiedly, adverb
mortifier, noun
mortifyingly, adverb
premortify, verb (used with object), premortified, premortifying.
unmortified, adjective
1. humble, abase. 2. subdue, restrain. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for mortify
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • It is too ridiculous that such a girl as Thomasin could so mortify us as to get jilted on the wedding day.

    Return of the Native Thomas Hardy
  • The intention is, I tell you plainly, to mortify you into a sense of your duty.

    Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9) Samuel Richardson
  • In scriptural language, to subdue; to mortify; to destroy the power or ruling influence of.

    The Christ John Eleazer Remsburg
  • But your kings do not allow so small a thing to vex or mortify them.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
  • To such, what lesson is learned by the daily example of the nuns who mortify their flesh, fast, pray and weep?

    Vendetta Marie Corelli
  • Though I showed nothing of it, it served only to mortify me.

    The Autobiography of Madame Guyon Jeanne Marie Bouvier de La Motte Guyon
  • If ye through the spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

    True Words for Brave Men Charles Kingsley
  • To mortify her the more, she was landed at Traitors' Stairs.

  • The journey through it is cheerless, melancholy, wearisome, and serveth to temper and mortify over-joyousness of thought.

    Man and Nature George P. Marsh
British Dictionary definitions for mortify


verb -fies, -fying, -fied
(transitive) to humiliate or cause to feel shame
(transitive) (Christianity) to subdue and bring under control by self-denial, disciplinary exercises, etc
(intransitive) to undergo tissue death or become gangrenous
Derived Forms
mortifier, noun
mortifying, adjective
mortifyingly, adverb
Word Origin
C14: via Old French from Church Latin mortificāre to put to death, from Latin mors death + facere to do
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for mortify

late 14c., "to kill," from Old French mortefiier "destroy, overwhelm, punish," from Late Latin mortificare "cause death, kill, put to death," literally "make dead," from mortificus "producing death," from Latin mors (genitive mortis) "death" (see mortal (adj.)) + root of facere "to make" (see factitious). Religious sense of "to subdue the flesh by abstinence and discipline" first attested early 15c. Sense of "humiliate" first recorded 1690s (cf. mortification). Related: Mortified; mortifying.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
mortify in Medicine

mortify mor·ti·fy (môr'tə-fī')
v. mor·ti·fied, mor·ti·fy·ing, mor·ti·fies
To undergo mortification; to become gangrenous or to necrotize.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Word Value for mortify

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for mortify