- 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.
Origin of persecute
Synonyms for persecute
Related Words for persecutorsautocrat, despot, extremist, zealot, racist, maniac, fanatic, oppressor, rascal, authoritarian, bully, dictator, taskmaster, martinet, persecutor, enthusiast, puritan, stickler, partisan, sectarian
Examples from the Web for persecutors
Contemporary Examples of persecutors
It was said to have been built atop the cave where Elijah hid from his persecutors.Exclusive Photos: Syria’s Oldest Synagogue, Destroyed by Assad
May 27, 2014
Not all schools are plagued with the problems of persecutors and bullycides.Bullied to Death
March 30, 2010
Historical Examples of persecutors
You can no more change your nature, than your persecutors can theirs.Clarissa, Volume 2 (of 9)
I have always spoken gently to you and have always sheltered you from your persecutors.Debts of Honor
Anyhow, you and I, Jean, have been too much persecuted to turn into persecutors.We Two
Cornwood leaped from his chair, and began to kick at his two persecutors.Up the River
The persecutors and their victims have long been dead, and judged.The Art of Disappearing
John Talbot Smith
- to oppress, harass, or maltreat, esp because of race, religion, etc
- to bother persistently
Word Origin for persecute
mid-15c., "to oppress for the holding of a belief or opinion," from Middle French persécuter "pursue, torment, open legal action" (14c.), from Latin persecutus, past participle of persequi "to pursue" (see persecution). Related: Persecuted; persecuting.