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Supposedly vs. Supposably


[suh-pres] /səˈprɛs/
verb (used with object)
to put an end to the activities of (a person, body of persons, etc.):
to suppress the Communist and certain left-leaning parties.
to do away with by or as by authority; abolish; stop (a practice, custom, etc.).
to keep in or repress (a feeling, smile, groan, etc.).
to withhold from disclosure or publication (truth, evidence, a book, names, etc.).
to stop or arrest (a flow, hemorrhage, cough, etc.).
to vanquish or subdue (a revolt, rebellion, etc.); quell; crush.
Electricity. to reduce or eliminate (an irregular or undesired oscillation or frequency) in a circuit.
Origin of suppress
late Middle English
1375-1425; late Middle English suppressen < Latin suppressus (past participle of supprimere to press down), equivalent to sup- sup- + pressus (see press1)
Related forms
[suh-prest-lee, -pres-id-] /səˈprɛst li, -ˈprɛs ɪd-/ (Show IPA),
suppressible, adjective
suppressive, adjective
suppressively, adverb
suppressor, suppresser, noun
nonsuppressed, adjective
nonsuppressive, adjective
nonsuppressively, adverb
nonsuppressiveness, noun
presuppress, verb (used with object)
quasi-suppressed, adjective
resuppress, verb (used with object)
self-suppressing, adjective
self-suppressive, adjective
unsuppressed, adjective
unsuppressible, adjective
unsuppressive, adjective
well-suppressed, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for suppressed
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • "Feels a bit grumpy, I fancy," thought Noel, with a suppressed grin.

    Mollie's Prince Rosa Nouchette Carey
  • A suppressed exhilaration rose-tinted every projected scheme.

    Thoroughbreds W. A. Fraser
  • If he might have worked his will, he would also have suppressed English learning and literature.

    The Ifs of History Joseph Edgar Chamberlin
  • "I shall not read you this," she said finally in a strangled, suppressed voice.

    The Leopard Woman Stewart Edward White
  • The mass was suppressed, images destroyed, and monasteries pulled down.

British Dictionary definitions for suppressed


verb (transitive)
to put an end to; prohibit
to hold in check; restrain: I was obliged to suppress a smile
to withhold from circulation or publication: to suppress seditious pamphlets
to stop the activities of; crush: to suppress a rebellion
  1. to reduce or eliminate (unwanted oscillations) in a circuit
  2. to eliminate (a particular frequency or group of frequencies) in a signal
  1. to resist consciously (an idea or a desire entering one's mind)
  2. to exercise self-control by preventing the expression of (certain desires) Compare repress (sense 3)
Derived Forms
suppresser, noun
suppressible, adjective
Word Origin
C14: from Latin suppressus held down, from supprimere to restrain, from sub- down + premere to press
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 suppressed



late 14c., "to put down by force or authority," from Latin suppressus, past participle of supprimere "press down, stop, check, stifle," from sub "down, under" (see sub-) + premere "push against" (see press (v.1)). Sense of "prevent or prohibit the circulation of" is from 1550s. Related: Suppressed; suppressing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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suppressed in Medicine

suppress sup·press (sə-prěs')
v. sup·pressed, sup·press·ing, sup·press·es

  1. To curtail or inhibit the activity of something, such as the immune system.

  2. To deliberately exclude unacceptable desires or thoughts from the mind.

  3. To reduce the incidence or severity of a condition or symptom, such as a hemorrhage.

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