- to distress with mental or bodily pain; trouble greatly or grievously: to be afflicted with arthritis.
- to overthrow; defeat.
- to humble.
Origin of afflict
SynonymsSee more synonyms for afflict on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for self-afflicting
Foolish saints, crafty villains, sanctimonious women, and self-afflicting Pharisees are the destroyers of the world.
- (tr) to cause suffering or unhappiness to; distress greatly
Word Origin and History for self-afflicting
late 14c., "to cast down," from Old French aflicter, from Latin afflictare "to damage, harass, torment," frequentative of affligere (past participle afflictus) "to dash down, overthrow," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + fligere (past participle flictus) "to strike," from PIE root *bhlig- "to strike" (cf. Greek phlibein "to press, crush," Czech blizna "scar," Welsh blif "catapult"). Transferred meaning of "trouble, distress," is first recorded 1530s. Related: Afflicted; afflicting.