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savage

[sav-ij]
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adjective
  1. fierce, ferocious, or cruel; untamed: savage beasts.
  2. uncivilized; barbarous: savage tribes.
  3. enraged or furiously angry, as a person.
  4. unpolished; rude: savage manners.
  5. wild or rugged, as country or scenery: savage wilderness.
  6. Archaic. uncultivated; growing wild.
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noun
  1. an uncivilized human being.
  2. a fierce, brutal, or cruel person.
  3. a rude, boorish person.
  4. a member of a preliterate society.
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verb (used with object), sav·aged, sav·ag·ing.
  1. to assault and maul by biting, rending, goring, etc.; tear at or mutilate: numerous sheep savaged by dogs.
  2. to attack or criticize thoroughly or remorselessly; excoriate: a play savaged by the critics.
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Origin of savage

1250–1300; Middle English savage, sauvage (adj.) < Middle French sauvage, salvage < Medieval Latin salvāticus, for Latin silvāticus, equivalent to silv(a) woods + -āticus adj. suffix
Related formssav·age·ly, adverbsav·age·ness, nounhalf-sav·age, adjectivehalf-sav·age·ly, adverbpre·sav·age, adjectivequa·si-sav·age, adjectivequa·si-sav·age·ly, adverbsem·i·sav·age, adjectivesem·i·sav·age, nounun·sav·age, adjectiveun·sav·age·ly, adverbun·sav·age·ness, noun

Synonyms

See more synonyms for savage on Thesaurus.com
1. wild, feral, fell; bloodthirsty. 2. wild. 3. infuriated. 5. rough, uncultivated. 9. churl, oaf.

Synonym study

1. See cruel.

Antonyms

1. mild. 2, 4. cultured. 5. cultivated.

Savage

[sav-ij]
noun
  1. Michael Joseph,1872–1940, New Zealand statesman and labor leader: prime minister 1935–40.
  2. Richard,1697?–1743, English poet.
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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for savage

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • An hour ago he had whirled her out of her senses in savage passion.

    Viviette

    William J. Locke

  • There was a savage note in his voice under which the girl visibly winced.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • His head was thrust forward menacingly, and his eyes were savage.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • Her voice cut fiercely into the quiet of the room, imperious, savage.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • Chip, savage in his misery, regarded her over one square shoulder.


British Dictionary definitions for savage

savage

adjective
  1. wild; untamedsavage beasts of the jungle
  2. ferocious in temper; viciousa savage dog
  3. uncivilized; crudesavage behaviour
  4. (of peoples) nonliterate or primitivea savage tribe
  5. (of terrain) rugged and uncultivated
  6. obsolete far from human habitation
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noun
  1. a member of a nonliterate society, esp one regarded as primitive
  2. a crude or uncivilized person
  3. a fierce or vicious person or animal
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verb (tr)
  1. to criticize violently
  2. to attack ferociously and woundthe dog savaged the child
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Derived Formssavagedom, nounsavagely, adverbsavageness, noun

Word Origin

C13: from Old French sauvage, from Latin silvāticus belonging to a wood, from silva a wood

Savage

noun
  1. Michael Joseph. 1872-1940, New Zealand statesman; prime minister of New Zealand (1935-40)
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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 savage

adj.

mid-13c., "fierce, ferocious;" c.1300, "wild, undomesticated, untamed" (of animals and places), from Old French sauvage, salvage "wild, savage, untamed, strange, pagan," from Late Latin salvaticus, alteration of silvaticus "wild," literally "of the woods," from silva "forest, grove" (see sylvan). Of persons, the meaning "reckless, ungovernable" is attested from c.1400, earlier in sense "indomitable, valiant" (c.1300).

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n.

"wild person," c.1400, from savage (adj.).

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v.

"to tear with the teeth, maul," 1880, from savage (adj.). Earlier "to act the savage" (1560s). Related: Savaged; savaging.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper