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victim

[vik-tim] /ˈvɪk tɪm/
noun
1.
a person who suffers from a destructive or injurious action or agency:
a victim of an automobile accident.
2.
a person who is deceived or cheated, as by his or her own emotions or ignorance, by the dishonesty of others, or by some impersonal agency:
a victim of misplaced confidence; the victim of a swindler; a victim of an optical illusion.
3.
a person or animal sacrificed or regarded as sacrificed:
war victims.
4.
a living creature sacrificed in religious rites.
Origin
1490-1500
1490-1500; < Latin victima sacrificial animal
Related forms
victimhood, noun
victimless, adjective
nonvictim, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for victims
  • A number of murderers have performed seemingly vampiric rituals upon their victims.
  • Ss personnel told the victims that they were to take a shower and undergo delousing.
  • It was discovered that all the victims had a penchant for squirrel brains.
  • victims typically bleed directly through the skin in early stages.
  • It merely demands that noninvasive men shall not be made the victims of such force.
  • White republicans were often victims of lynching as well in the postwar period.
  • Mabel and alec mobilized the community to help victims in halifax.
  • Many of these victims have no symptoms before dying suddenly.
  • Alex encounters many of his former victims, all of whom seek revenge upon him.
  • The victims screamed for help and banged pots and pans to alert their neighbors.
British Dictionary definitions for victims

victim

/ˈvɪktɪm/
noun
1.
a person or thing that suffers harm, death, etc, from another or from some adverse act, circumstance, etc: victims of tyranny
2.
a person who is tricked or swindled; dupe
3.
a living person or animal sacrificed in a religious rite
Usage note
Using the word victim or victims in relation to chronic illness or disability is often considered demeaning and disempowering. Alternative phrases such as who experiences, who has been diagnosed with, or simply with and then the name of the disability or illness, can be used instead
Word Origin
C15: from Latin victima
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 victims

victim

n.

late 15c., "living creature killed and offered as a sacrifice to a deity or supernatural power," from Latin victima "person or animal killed as a sacrifice." Perhaps distantly connected to Old English wig "idol," Gothic weihs "holy," German weihen "consecrate" (cf. Weihnachten "Christmas") on notion of "a consecrated animal." Sense of "person who is hurt, tortured, or killed by another" is first recorded 1650s; meaning "person oppressed by some power or situation" is from 1718. Weaker sense of "person taken advantage of" is recorded from 1781.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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