quell

[ kwel ]
/ kwɛl /

verb (used with object)

to suppress; put an end to; extinguish: The troops quelled the rebellion quickly.
to vanquish; subdue.
to quiet or allay (emotions, anxieties, etc.): The child's mother quelled his fears of the thunder.

Origin of quell

before 900; Middle English quellen, Old English cwellan to kill; akin to Old Norse kvelja to torment, German quälen to vex; cf. kill1
Related formsquell·a·ble, adjectivequell·er, nounun·quell·a·ble, adjectiveun·quelled, adjective
Can be confusedquail quell quill
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for quell

British Dictionary definitions for quell

quell

/ (kwɛl) /

verb (tr)

to suppress or beat down (rebellion, disorder, etc); subdue
to overcome or allayto quell pain; to quell grief
Derived Formsqueller, noun

Word Origin for quell

Old English cwellan to kill; related to Old Saxon quellian, Old High German quellen, Old Norse kvelja to torment
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 quell

quell


v.

Old English cwellan "to kill, murder, execute," from Proto-Germanic *kwaljanan (cf. Old English cwelan "to die," cwalu "violent death;" Old Saxon quellian "to torture, kill;" Old Norse kvelja "to torment;" Middle Dutch quelen "to vex, tease, torment;" Old High German quellan "to suffer pain," German quälen "to torment, torture"), from PIE *gwele- "to throw, reach," with extended sense of "to pierce" (cf. Armenian kelem "I torture;" Old Church Slavonic zali "pain;" Lithuanian galas "end," gela "agony," gelati "to sting"). Milder sense of "suppress, extinguish" developed by c.1300. Related: Quelled; quelling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper