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lynch

[linch]
See more synonyms for lynch on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to put to death, especially by hanging, by mob action and without legal authority.
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Origin of lynch

1825–35, Americanism; v. use of lynch in lynch law
Related formslynch·er, nounan·ti·lynch·ing, adjective
Can be confusedhang lynch (see synonym study at hang)

Synonym study

See hang.

Lynch

[linch]
noun
  1. JohnJack, 1917–1999, Irish political leader: prime minister 1966–73, 1977–79.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for lynch

hang, execute, murder, kill

Examples from the Web for lynch

Contemporary Examples of lynch

Historical Examples of lynch

  • After all, there was no sense in making an enemy out of Lynch.

    Out Like a Light

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • Lynch said, "I can have him there by then, and you can get together and talk."

    Out Like a Light

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • Malone ducked past Lynch, rubbed at his chin and looked for Mike.

    Out Like a Light

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • He looked at Lynch for a long minute, and then said: "Lieutenant—"

    Out Like a Light

    Gordon Randall Garrett

  • "And that means I'm going to have to be informed," Lynch said.

    Out Like a Light

    Gordon Randall Garrett


British Dictionary definitions for lynch

lynch

verb
  1. (tr) (of a mob) to punish (a person) for some supposed offence by hanging without a trial
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Derived Formslyncher, nounlynching, noun

Word Origin for lynch

probably after Charles Lynch (1736–96), Virginia justice of the peace, who presided over extralegal trials of Tories during the American War of Independence

Lynch

noun
  1. David. born 1946, US film director; his work includes the films Eraserhead (1977), Blue Velvet (1986), Wild at Heart (1990), Mulholland Drive (2001), and Inland Empire (2006), and the television series Twin Peaks (1990)
  2. John, known as Jack Lynch. 1917–99, Irish statesman; prime minister of the Republic of Ireland (1966–73; 1977–79)
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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 lynch

v.

1835, from earlier Lynch law (1811), likely named after William Lynch (1742-1820) of Pittsylvania, Virginia, who c.1780 led a vigilance committee to keep order there during the Revolution. Other sources trace the name to Charles Lynch (1736-1796) a Virginia magistrate who fined and imprisoned Tories in his district c.1782, but the connection to him is less likely. Originally any sort of summary justice, especially by flogging; narrowing of focus to "extralegal execution by hanging" is 20c. Lynch mob is attested from 1838. The surname is perhaps from Irish Loingseach "sailor." Cf. earlier Lydford law, from a place in Dartmoor, England, "where was held a Stannaries Court of summary jurisdiction" [Weekley], hence:

Lydford law: is to hang men first, and indite them afterwards. [Thomas Blount, "Glossographia," 1656]

Related: Lynched; lynching.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper