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persecute

[ pur-si-kyoot ]
/ ˈpɜr sɪˌkyut /
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See synonyms for: persecute / persecuted / persecutor on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object), per·se·cut·ed, per·se·cut·ing.

to pursue with harassing or oppressive treatment, especially because of religious or political beliefs, ethnic or racial origin, gender identity, or sexual orientation.
to annoy or trouble persistently.

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Origin of persecute

First recorded in 1400–50; Late Middle English; back formation from persecutour “persecutor,” ultimately from Late Latin persecūtor originally “prosecutor,” equivalent to persecū-, variant stem of persequī “to prosecute, pursue closely” + -tor; see origin at per-, sequence, -tor
persecute , prosecute
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for persecute

persecute
/ (ˈpɜːsɪˌkjuːt) /

verb (tr)

to oppress, harass, or maltreat, esp because of race, religion, etc
to bother persistently
persecutive, adjectivepersecutor, noun
C15: from Old French persecuter, back formation from persecuteur, from Late Latin persecūtor pursuer, from persequī to take vengeance upon
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
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