- the act of inflicting excruciating pain, as punishment or revenge, as a means of getting a confession or information, or for sheer cruelty.
- a method of inflicting such pain.
- Often tortures. the pain or suffering caused or undergone.
- extreme anguish of body or mind; agony.
- a cause of severe pain or anguish.
- to subject to torture.
- to afflict with severe pain of body or mind: My back is torturing me.
- to force or extort by torture: We'll torture the truth from his lips!
- to twist, force, or bring into some unnatural position or form: trees tortured by storms.
- to distort or pervert (language, meaning, etc.).
Origin of torture
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for tortured
Tortured by the world and the world's law, yet Heaven's peace had settled on her.A Son of Hagar
Sir Hall Caine
Tortured by his inward agitation, he rose and began to pace the room.The Child of Pleasure
Tortured by these imaginings, I rose up from the pavement and stood erect.Vendetta
Tortured, humiliated, helpless, he saw the lash that cut him fall also upon her.The Business of Life
Robert W. Chambers
Tortured you may be to the verge of the grave, but never into it.Mabel's Mistake
Ann S. Stephens
- to cause extreme physical pain to, esp in order to extract information, break resistance, etcto torture prisoners
- to give mental anguish to
- to twist into a grotesque form
- physical or mental anguish
- the practice of torturing a person
- a cause of mental agony or worry
Word Origin and History for tortured
early 15c., "contortion, twisting, distortion," from Old French torture "infliction of great pain, great pain, agony," and directly from Late Latin torture "a twisting, writhing, torture, torment," from stem of Latin torquere "to twist, turn, wind, wring, distort" (see thwart).
1580s, from torture (n.). Related: Tortured; torturing.