massacre

[ mas-uh-ker ]
/ ˈmæs ə kər /

noun

the unnecessary, indiscriminate killing of a large number of human beings or animals, as in barbarous warfare or persecution or for revenge or plunder.
a general slaughter, as of persons or animals: the massacre of millions during the war.
Informal. a crushing defeat, especially in sports.

verb (used with object), mas·sa·cred, mas·sa·cring.

to kill unnecessarily and indiscriminately, especially a large number of persons.
Informal. to defeat decisively, especially in sports.

QUIZZES

CAN YOU GUESS THESE WORDS FROM AROUND THE US?

American English is not always as it appears to be ... get to know regional words in this quiz!
Question 1 of 10
A bet is synonymous with a wager, but what does it mean in New York?

Origin of massacre

First recorded in 1575–85; (noun), from Middle French massacre, noun derivative of massacrer,Old French maçacrer, macecler, probably from unattested Vulgar Latin matteūcculāre, verbal derivative of unattested matteūca “mallet” (see mashie, mace1); (verb) from Middle French massacrer

synonym study for massacre

See slaughter.

OTHER WORDS FROM massacre

mas·sa·crer [mas-uh-krer], /ˈmæs ə krər/, nounun·mas·sa·cred, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for massacre

British Dictionary definitions for massacre

massacre
/ (ˈmæsəkə) /

noun

the wanton or savage killing of large numbers of people, as in battle
informal an overwhelming defeat, as in a game

verb (tr)

to kill indiscriminately or in large numbers
informal to defeat overwhelmingly

Derived forms of massacre

massacrer (ˈmæsəkrə), noun

Word Origin for massacre

C16: from Old French, of unknown origin
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