- to harass, annoy, or prove a nuisance to by or as if by repeated attacks; worry: He was harried by constant doubts.
- to ravage, as in war; devastate: The troops harried the countryside.
- to make harassing incursions.
Origin of harry
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for harrying
Its young front line ran hard at the Azzurri, harrying hardened defenders with speed and, yes, panache.The Group of Life
June 15, 2014
These are harrying days for all kids, but for those on the spectrum, the challenges are more intense and different in kind.Autism's Back-to-School Anxiety
September 24, 2011
It was the harrying they enjoyed––the sight of a man tormented.The Web of the Golden Spider
Frederick Orin Bartlett
Already that king hath come into this land and is harrying and burning.'King Arthur's Knights
He was at bay and the excited dogs were harrying him as we came up.The Grizzly
Enos A. Mills
He was only too willing to believe, that he might find excuse for harrying and persecuting.Andersonville, Volume 4
This myth is undoubtedly one of the class which relates to the 'harrying of Hades.'The Myths of the North American Indians
- (tr) to harass; worry
- to ravage (a town, etc), esp in war
Word Origin and History for harrying
Old English hergian "make war, lay waste, ravage, plunder," the word used in the "Anglo-Saxon Chronicle" for what the Vikings did to England, from Proto-Germanic verb *harohan (cf. Old Frisian urheria "lay waste, ravage, plunder," Old Norse herja "to make a raid, to plunder," Old Saxon and Old High German herion, German verheeren "to destroy, lay waste, devastate"), from *harjaz "an armed force" (cf. Old English here, Old Norse herr "crowd, great number; army, troop," Old Saxon and Old Frisian heri, Dutch heir, Old High German har, German Heer "host, army," Gothic harjis), from PIE root *koro- "war" (cf. Lithuanian karas "war, quarrel," karias "host, army;" Old Church Slavonic kara "strife;" Middle Irish cuire "troop;" Old Persian kara "host, people, army;" Greek koiranos "ruler, leader, commander"). Weakened sense of "worry, goad, harass" is from c.1400. Related: Harried; harrying.
masc. proper name, a familiar form of Henry. Weekley takes the overwhelming number of Harris and Harrison surnames as evidence that "Harry," not "Henry," was the Middle English pronunciation of Henry. Also cf. Harriet, English equivalent of French Henriette, fem. diminutive of Henri. Nautical slang Harriet Lane "preserved meat" (1896) refers to a famous murder victim whose killer allegedly chopped up her body.