[hyoo-mil-ee-ey-ting or, often, yoo-]


lowering the pride, self-respect, or dignity of a person; mortifying: Such a humiliating defeat was good for his overblown ego.

Origin of humiliating

First recorded in 1750–60; humiliate + -ing2
Related formshu·mil·i·at·ing·ly, adverbself-hu·mil·i·at·ing, adjectiveun·hu·mil·i·at·ing, adjectiveun·hu·mil·i·at·ing·ly, adverb


[hyoo-mil-ee-eyt or, often, yoo-]

verb (used with object), hu·mil·i·at·ed, hu·mil·i·at·ing.

to cause (a person) a painful loss of pride, self-respect, or dignity; mortify.

Origin of humiliate

1525–35; < Late Latin humiliātus (past participle of humiliāre “to humble”), equivalent to Latin humili(s) humble + -ātus -ate1
Related formshu·mil·i·a·tor, nounhu·mil·i·a·to·ry [hyoo-mil-ee-uh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee or, often, yoo-] /hyuˈmɪl i əˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i or, often, yu-/, hu·mil·i·a·tive, adjectivere·hu·mil·i·ate, verb (used with object), re·hu·mil·i·at·ed, re·hu·mil·i·at·ing.un·hu·mil·i·at·ed, adjective

Synonyms for humiliate

Synonym study

Antonyms for humiliate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for humiliating

Contemporary Examples of humiliating

Historical Examples of humiliating

  • This sentence was as humiliating and mortifying as anything that could be put upon him.

  • This humiliating order was obeyed, and all hands of us were called aft.

    Ned Myers

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • Will you never be convinced that, that; but why make this humiliating confession?

    Vivian Grey

    Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli

  • Flight was humiliating and dreadful, but to remain in England was impracticable.

  • I was fronted by a fact, humiliating or not—a fact which I could not deny.

    The First Violin

    Jessie Fothergill

British Dictionary definitions for humiliating



(tr) to lower or hurt the dignity or pride of
Derived Formshumiliated, adjectivehumiliating, adjectivehumiliatingly, adverbhumiliation, nounhumiliative (hjuːˈmɪljətɪv), adjectivehumiliator, nounhumiliatory, adjective

Word Origin for humiliate

C16: from Late Latin humiliāre, from Latin humilis humble
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 humiliating



1530s, perhaps a back-formation from humiliation. Related: Humiliated; humiliating; humiliatingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper