verb (used with object)
- to overthrow; defeat.
- to humble.
Origin of afflict
Examples from the Web for afflict
He wanted to give a voice to the voiceless, comfort the afflicted, and afflict the comfortable.Obama Administration and Sotloff Family Battle Over Blame for Journalist’s Kidnapping|Josh Rogin|September 22, 2014|DAILY BEAST
They want to take on authority and comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable and all that hoo-ha.
Tina Brown: So performance anxiety must afflict writers as well as actors.
I cannot see why Heaven ever chose to afflict me so cruelly.They Looked and Loved|Mrs. Alex McVeigh Miller
And of thy mercy cut off mine enemies, and destroy all them that afflict my soul: for I am thy servant.David|Charles Kingsley
The insanity and disease that afflict many men of genius is well known.Crime: Its Cause and Treatment|Clarence Darrow
Anna Belle's forced abstemiousness had ceased to afflict her.Jewel|Clara Louise Burnham
Nine-tenths of the ills that afflict mankind have their origin in a foul digestive apparatus and a consequently poisoned body.Intestinal Ills|Alcinous Burton Jamison
Word Origin for afflict
late 14c., "to cast down," from Old French aflicter, from Latin afflictare "to damage, harass, torment," frequentative of affligere (past participle afflictus) "to dash down, overthrow," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + fligere (past participle flictus) "to strike," from PIE root *bhlig- "to strike" (cf. Greek phlibein "to press, crush," Czech blizna "scar," Welsh blif "catapult"). Transferred meaning of "trouble, distress," is first recorded 1530s. Related: Afflicted; afflicting.