[fra-tri-sahyd, frey-]


a person who kills his or her brother.
the act of killing one's brother.

Origin of fratricide

1490–1500; (def 1) < Middle French < frātricīda, equivalent to frātri- (combining form of frāter) brother + -cīda -cide; (def 2) < Middle French < Late Latin frātricīdium, equivalent to frātricīd(a) + -ium noun suffix
Related formsfrat·ri·cid·al, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for fratricide

Contemporary Examples of fratricide

Historical Examples of fratricide

  • For she, like her father and all the Borgias, firmly believed that Cæsar was a fratricide.

    Lucretia Borgia

    Ferdinand Gregorovius

  • Absolution to any parricide, matricide, or fratricide, for three ducats.


    Friedrich Maximilian von Klinger

  • The fratricide also is said by some to have been committed in this place.

  • But what can be expected from the descendants of the fratricide Romulus?

  • And the history of human wo begins with Cain the fratricide.

British Dictionary definitions for fratricide



the act of killing one's brother
a person who kills his brother
military the destruction of or interference with a nuclear missile before it can strike its target caused by the earlier explosion of a warhead at a nearby target
Derived Formsfratricidal, adjective

Word Origin for fratricide

C15: from Latin frātricīda; see frater 1, -cide
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 fratricide

mid-15c., "person who kills a brother;" 1560s, "act of killing a brother," from Latin fratricida "brother-slayer," from frater "brother" (see brother) + cida "killer," or cidum "a killing," both from caedere "to kill, to cut down" (see -cide). Among several Old English words for this were broðorbana "one who kills a brother;" broðorcwealm "act of killing a brother."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper