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[ri-puhls] /rɪˈpʌls/
verb (used with object), repulsed, repulsing.
to drive back; repel:
to repulse an assailant.
to repel with denial, discourtesy, or the like; refuse or reject.
to cause feelings of repulsion in:
The scenes of violence in the film may repulse some viewers.
the act of repelling.
the fact of being repelled, as in hostile encounter.
a refusal or rejection.
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English < Latin repulsus, past participle of repellere to repel
Related forms
repulser, noun
unrepulsed, adjective
unrepulsing, adjective
2. rebuff, spurn, shun, snub. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for repulsed
  • Each was repulsed by those who feared that our support would collapse.
  • repulsed by the space operas that had come before, they depicted spaceflight as slow and silent.
  • They are repulsed by the theft and misuse of the money donated to hel their country.
  • Yet instead of being repulsed, you fall down on your knees and worship.
  • If you are a gamer of any sort, you should be repulsed by this sort of accusation.
  • He did not admire his father for his prowess in the war and was repulsed at his forcing him to become tough.
  • He boasted that any punch aimed at his abdomen would be jarringly repulsed.
  • Some people are repulsed by it, others can't smell it at all.
  • If the real virus later tries to invade, it will be smartly repulsed.
  • She soon found out that the roses were coming from her co-star, and she was repulsed.
British Dictionary definitions for repulsed


verb (transitive)
to drive back or ward off (an attacking force); repel; rebuff
to reject with coldness or discourtesy: she repulsed his advances
to produce a feeling of aversion or distaste
the act or an instance of driving back or warding off; rebuff
a cold discourteous rejection or refusal
Derived Forms
repulser, noun
Usage note
Some people think that the use of repulse in sentences such as he was repulsed by what he saw is incorrect and that the correct word is repel
Word Origin
C16: from Latin repellere to drive back, repel
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 repulsed



early 15c., from Latin repulsus, past participle of repellere "drive back, reject" (see repel). Related: Repulsed; repulsing.


1530s, from Latin repulsa "refusal, denial," noun use of fem. past participle of repellere (see repel).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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