obsess

[ uhb-ses ]
/ əbˈsɛs /
||

verb (used with object)

to dominate or preoccupy the thoughts, feelings, or desires of (a person); beset, trouble, or haunt persistently or abnormally: Suspicion obsessed him.

verb (used without object)

to think about something unceasingly or persistently; dwell obsessively upon something.

Nearby words

  1. observative,
  2. observatory,
  3. observe,
  4. observedly,
  5. observer,
  6. obsessed,
  7. obsession,
  8. obsessional,
  9. obsessive,
  10. obsessive-compulsive

Origin of obsess

1495–1505; < Latin obsessus, past participle of obsidēre to occupy, frequent, besiege, equivalent to ob- ob- + -sid(ēre) combining form of sedēre to sit1

SYNONYMS FOR obsess
Related formsob·sess·ing·ly, adverbob·ses·sor, noun

Can be confusedabscess obsess

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for obsesses


British Dictionary definitions for obsesses

obsess

/ (əbˈsɛs) /

verb

(tr; when passive, foll by with or by) to preoccupy completely; haunt
(intr; usually foll by on or over) to worry neurotically or obsessively; brood

Word Origin for obsess

C16: from Latin obsessus besieged, past participle of obsidēre, from ob- in front of + sedēre to sit

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 obsesses

obsess

v.

c.1500, "to besiege," from Latin obsessus, past participle of obsidere "watch closely; besiege, occupy; stay, remain, abide" literally "sit opposite to," from ob "against" (see ob-) + sedere "sit" (see sedentary). Of evil spirits, "to haunt," from 1530s. Psychological sense is 20c. Related: Obsessed; obsessing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper