- to exercise absolute power or control, especially cruelly or oppressively (often followed by over).
- to govern despotically, cruelly, or oppressively.
- to govern or reign as a tyrant.
- to rule or govern tyrannically; treat oppressively.
Also especially British, tyr·an·nise.
Origin of tyrannize
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for tyrannize
Perhaps most important, the idea of putting tyrants on trial has caught on in the countries they tyrannize.Take Gaddafi Alive
August 23, 2011
She will tyrannize over you, just as her mother does over the old man.In the Midst of Alarms
They pet and tyrannize over Daisy by turns, and she is getting spoilt.Little Men
Louisa May Alcott
And never (“hardly ever”) has monopoly been able to recover its chance to tyrannize and rob!The Arena
And who does not know how ruthlessly women will tyrannize when they are let to domineer?The History of Henry Esmond, Esq.
W. M. Thackeray
At present, the servants are set above, defy, and tyrannize over the masters.Church Reform
- (when intr, often foll by over) to rule or exercise power (over) in a cruel or oppressive manner
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
Word Origin and History for tyrannize
late 15c., from Middle French tyranniser (14c.), from tyrannie (see tyranny). Related: Tyrannized; tyrannizing.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper