[ dih-mol-ish ]
See synonyms for: demolishdemolisheddemolishing on

verb (used with object)
  1. to destroy or ruin (a building or other structure), especially on purpose; tear down; raze.

  2. to put an end to; destroy; explode: The results of his research demolished many theories.

  1. to lay waste to; ruin utterly: The fire demolished the area.

  2. Informal. to devour completely: We simply demolished that turkey.

Origin of demolish

1560–70; <Middle French démoliss-, stem of démolir<Latin dēmōlīrī to destroy, equivalent to dē-de- + mōlīrī to set in motion, struggle (mōl(ēs) mass, bulk + -īrī infinitive suffix)

synonym study For demolish

1. See destroy.

Other words for demolish

Other words from demolish

  • de·mol·ish·er, noun
  • de·mol·ish·ment, noun
  • half-de·mol·ished, adjective
  • un·de·mol·ished, adjective

Words Nearby demolish Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use demolish in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for demolish


/ (dɪˈmɒlɪʃ) /

  1. to tear down or break up (buildings, etc)

  2. to destroy; put an end to (an argument, etc)

  1. facetious to eat up: she demolished the whole cake!

Origin of demolish

C16: from French démolir, from Latin dēmōlīrī to throw down, destroy, from de- + mōlīrī to strive, toil, construct, from mōles mass, bulk

Derived forms of demolish

  • demolisher, noun
  • demolishment, noun

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