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slay

[sley] /sleɪ/
verb (used with object), slew, slain, slaying.
1.
to kill by violence.
2.
to destroy; extinguish.
3.
sley.
4.
Informal. to impress strongly; overwhelm, especially by humor:
Your jokes slay me.
5.
Obsolete. to strike.
verb (used without object), slew, slain, slaying.
6.
to kill or murder.
noun
7.
sley.
Origin
900
before 900; Middle English sleen, slayn, Old English slēan; cognate with Dutch slaan, German schlagen, Old Norse slā, Gothic slahan to strike, beat
Related forms
slayable, adjective
slayer, noun
unslayable, adjective
Synonyms
1. murder, slaughter, massacre, butcher, assassinate. 2. annihilate, ruin.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for slayer
  • Such games allow virtually anyone to be a heroic monster slayer without leaving the comfort of their couch.
  • Scientists could have eliminated it, but tuberculosis, slayer of millions is once more stalking the streets.
  • The mousetrap long has been viewed as a simple, efficient slayer of household nuisances.
  • And you say, all right, he's a pompous and privileged slayer.
  • Including persons acquitted by reason of insanity in the slayer statute.
British Dictionary definitions for slayer

slay

/sleɪ/
verb (transitive) slays, slaying, slew, slain
1.
(archaic or literary) to kill, esp violently
2.
(slang) to impress (someone) sexually
3.
(obsolete) to strike
Derived Forms
slayer, noun
Word Origin
Old English slēan; related to Old Norse slā, Gothic, Old High German slahan to strike, Old Irish slacaim I beat
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 slayer
n.

late 14c., agent noun from slay (v.). The Old English agent noun was slaga "slayer, killer."

slay

v.

Old English slean "to smite, strike, beat," also "to kill with a weapon, slaughter" (class VI strong verb; past tense sloh, slog, past participle slagen), from Proto-Germanic *slahan, from root *slog- "to hit" (cf. Old Norse and Old Frisian sla, Danish slaa, Middle Dutch slaen, Dutch slaan, Old High German slahan, German schlagen, Gothic slahan "to strike"). The Germanic words are from PIE root *slak- "to strike" (cf. Middle Irish past participle slactha "struck," slacc "sword").

Modern German cognate schlagen maintains the original sense of "to strike." Meaning "overwhelm with delight" (mid-14c.) preserves one of the wide range of meanings the word once had, including, in Old English, "stamp (coins); forge (weapons); throw, cast; pitch (a tent), to sting (of a snake); to dash, rush, come quickly; play (the harp); gain by conquest."

n.

"instrument on a weaver's loom to beat up the weft," Old English slæ, slea, slahae, from root meaning "strike" (see slay (v.)), so called from "striking" the web together. Hence the surname Slaymaker "maker of slays."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for slayer

slay

verb

To impress someone powerfully, esp to provoke violent and often derisive laughter: Pardon me, this will slay you/ The boys who slay me are the ones who have set pieces to recite when they answer the phone (1593+)


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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