see play havoc.
Words nearby raise havoc
What does raise havoc mean?
To raise havoc is to cause chaos or destruction or both.
Havoc means chaos, disorder, or confusion. It can also mean destruction, damage, or ruin. In many cases, it refers to a combination of these things. In raise havoc, the word raise means to bring about or cause.
Havoc is associated with seriously destructive and chaotic situations, such as natural disasters, as in The hurricane raised havoc throughout the region. But it can be used in a range of situations. An illness can raise havoc on your body. A virus can raise havoc in a computer network. The wind can raise havoc on your hair. In most cases, to raise havoc is to disrupt a situation that was (at least somewhat) orderly by making it become disorderly, especially when there is damage or destruction involved.
Example: A major accident on the highway has raised havoc on the morning commute, causing traffic jams and delays for miles around.
Where does raise havoc come from?
The phrase raise havoc has been used since at least the 1800s. The word havoc comes from the Old French havot, meaning “to pillage” (to violently loot and plunder a place, especially during a war). In Anglo-French, the spelling havok was used in the phrase crier havok, meaning “to cry havoc.” This refers to the practice of a military commander shouting “Havoc!” as a command to start pillaging.
Today, havoc is no longer closely associated with pillaging, but an invading army pillaging and causing chaos and destruction is a perfect example of raising havoc. Unlike wreak havoc and play havoc, which are synonyms of raise havoc, the phrase cry havoc means “to sound the alarm” (typically as a warning when something destructive is about to happen).
Did you know ... ?
What are some synonyms for raise havoc?
What are some words that share a root or word element with raise havoc?
What are some words that often get used in discussing raise havoc?
How is raise havoc used in real life?
Raise havoc is used in the context of situations that involve chaos, destruction, and often both. The phrase wreak havoc means the same thing and is more commonly used.
While the skiers, sledders, and snowshoers are delighted by this latest arrival of the white stuff, it is raising havoc on interior roads and highways. Please drive carefully, stay back from plow equipment, and above all – stay safe! #Shuswap pic.twitter.com/gompNmP6SS
— Greg Kyllo Shuswap (@KylloGreg) December 19, 2017
Pockets of clouds raising havoc with temperatures. Cold spot so far Benton Harbor at a low of -15.
— NWS Northern Indiana (@NWSIWX) January 14, 2015
— Ralph Nader (@RalphNader) September 5, 2014
Try using raise havoc!
Which of the following terms is NOT a synonym of raise havoc?
A. play havoc
B. wreak havoc
C. cry havoc
How to use raise havoc in a sentence
His wife passed away and they had kids, and he wanted to focus on being a dad so he just stopped to raise his kids.Coffee Talk with Fred Armisen: On ‘Portlandia,’ Meeting Obama, and Taylor Swift’s Greatness|Marlow Stern|January 7, 2015|DAILY BEAST
These brave souls took an icy dip in the ocean to ring in 2015 and raise money for charity.Diving Into 2015 With Polar Bear Plunge Extremists|James Joiner|January 1, 2015|DAILY BEAST
We happily hoist our egg nog in the air, embrace each other, and raise our out-of-tune voices in song.The Most Confusing Christmas Music Lyrics Explained (VIDEO)|Kevin Fallon|December 24, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Earlier that day, officials say, Stone went on a bloody rampage killing six of his kin and wreaking havoc in three small towns.
So with the doors of late night closed to her, Slate had to scale down her ambitions to raise her profile.The Curious Little Shell That Restarted Jenny Slate’s Career|Luke Hopping|December 15, 2014|DAILY BEAST
I called out several times, as loud as I could raise my voice, but all to no purpose.Gulliver's Travels|Jonathan Swift
They determined that an offensive war should be carried on against them, and voted to raise 90 men!The Every Day Book of History and Chronology|Joel Munsell
The minister's eye kept steady to one point; to raise the country he governed, to the utmost pinnacle of earthly grandeur.The Pastor's Fire-side Vol. 3 of 4|Jane Porter
To meet this heavy expense the ministers had to devise all sorts of expedients to raise money.Napoleon's Marshals|R. P. Dunn-Pattison
Would Hodson, knowing the exceeding importance of his mission, have turned to rescue a servant or raise a fallen horse?The Red Year|Louis Tracy