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[oh-ver-pou-er] /ˌoʊ vərˈpaʊ ər/
verb (used with object)
to overcome, master, or subdue by superior force:
to overpower a maniac.
to overcome or overwhelm in feeling; affect or impress excessively:
overpowered with confusion and desire.
to gain mastery over the bodily powers or mental faculties of:
a strong drink that quickly overpowered him.
to furnish or equip with excessive power:
a giant motor that overpowered the pump.
Origin of overpower
First recorded in 1585-95; over- + power
Related forms
unoverpowered, adjective
1. vanquish, subjugate, conquer, defeat, beat. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for overpower
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He would take her in spite of that; overpower her; force her to go.

    The Spenders Harry Leon Wilson
  • The plan of the conspirators had been to shoot down the horses and overpower the escort.

    The Secret Agent Joseph Conrad
  • No, not all: but you overpower me with your wit; and I cannot stand the 'lightning of your eyes.'

  • I am afraid your wealth and his (Antisthenes') combined may overpower me.

    The Symposium Xenophon
  • You, even more than I, are bound to see that the Assyrians do not overpower us.

    Cyropaedia Xenophon
British Dictionary definitions for overpower


verb (transitive)
to conquer or subdue by superior force
to have such a strong effect on as to make helpless or ineffective
to supply with more power than necessary
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 overpower

"to overcome with superior power," 1590s, from over- + power (v.). Related: Overpowered; overpowering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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