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or tormenter

[tawr-men-ter, tawr-men-] /tɔrˈmɛn tər, ˈtɔr mɛn-/
a person or thing that torments.
Theater. a curtain or framed structure behind the proscenium at both sides of the stage, for screening the wings from the audience.
Compare teaser (def 2).
Origin of tormentor
1250-1300; Middle English tormento(u)r < Anglo-French; Old French tormenteor. See torment, -or2 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for tormentors
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The luxuriant wool caused it to re-bound again, to the infinite delight of the tormentors, who smiled horribly at it.

    The Ranger Edward S. Ellis
  • As his tormentors had sensibly relaxed, he was able to take steps for his own security.

    The Tinted Venus F. Anstey
  • No doubt, had it come to the pinch, he might have bought some of his tormentors out three times over.

  • These seemed only to augment the mirth and spitefulness of his tormentors.

    The Boy Slaves Mayne Reid
  • Then hands laid hold of Johnnie's tormentors, hauling them back, and suddenly he found himself free.

    The Rich Little Poor Boy Eleanor Gates
British Dictionary definitions for tormentors


a person or thing that torments
a curtain or movable piece of stage scenery at either side of the proscenium arch, used to mask lights or exits and entrances
(films) a panel of sound-insulating material placed outside the field of the camera to control the acoustics on the sound stage
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 tormentors



late 13c., from Anglo-French tormentour, Old French tourmenteur, agent noun of Latin tormentare (see torment (v.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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