terrorism

[ ter-uh-riz-uh m ]
/ ˈtɛr əˌrɪz əm /

noun

the use of violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, especially for political purposes.
the state of fear and submission produced by terrorism or terrorization.
a terroristic method of governing or of resisting a government.

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Origin of terrorism

First recorded in 1785–95; terror + -ism

OTHER WORDS FROM terrorism

an·ti·ter·ror·ism, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for terrorism

British Dictionary definitions for terrorism

terrorism
/ (ˈtɛrəˌrɪzəm) /

noun

systematic use of violence and intimidation to achieve some goal
the act of terrorizing
the state of being terrorized
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

Cultural definitions for terrorism

terrorism

Acts of violence committed by groups that view themselves as victimized by some notable historical wrong. Although these groups have no formal connection with governments, they usually have the financial and moral backing of sympathetic governments. Typically, they stage unexpected attacks on civilian targets, including embassies and airliners, with the aim of sowing fear and confusion. Israel has been a frequent target of terrorism, but the United States has increasingly become its main target. (See also September 11 attacks, Osama bin Laden, Hezbollah, and Basque region.)

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.