verb (used with object), o·ver·awed, o·ver·aw·ing.

to restrain or subdue by inspiring awe; intimidate: He often uses that imperious scowl to overawe his subordinates.

Origin of overawe

First recorded in 1570–80; over- + awe
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

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Historical Examples of overawe

British Dictionary definitions for overawe



(tr) to subdue, restrain, or overcome by affecting with a feeling of awe
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 overawe

1570s, from over- + awe (v.). Perhaps coined by Spenser. Related: Overawed; overawing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper