[vang-kwish, van-]

verb (used with object)

to conquer or subdue by superior force, as in battle.
to defeat in any contest or conflict; be victorious over: to vanquish one's opponent in an argument.
to overcome or overpower: He vanquished all his fears.

Origin of vanquish

1300–50; Middle English vencuschen, venquisshen < Old French vencus past participle and venquis past tense of veintre < Latin vincere to overcome
Related formsvan·quish·a·ble, adjectivevan·quish·er, nounvan·quish·ment, nounun·van·quish·a·ble, adjectiveun·van·quished, adjectiveun·van·quish·ing, adjective

Synonyms for vanquish Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for vanquish

Contemporary Examples of vanquish

Historical Examples of vanquish

  • There is not another instrument can be discovered, to disarm and vanquish the human mind.


    William Godwin

  • The Church was peace—peace from the noise of life, and strength to fight and to vanquish.

    The Christian

    Hall Caine

  • Are you so tame and so poor-spirited that a threat is to vanquish you?


    Raphael Sabatini

  • Before his party was victorious it had to vanquish most determined opposition.

  • It admits their impotence to vanquish the loyal forces in open battle.

British Dictionary definitions for vanquish


verb (tr)

to defeat or overcome in a battle, contest, etc; conquer
to defeat or overcome in argument or debate
to conquer (an emotion)
Derived Formsvanquishable, adjectivevanquisher, nounvanquishment, noun

Word Origin for vanquish

C14: vanquisshen, from Old French venquis vanquished, from veintre to overcome, from Latin vincere
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 vanquish

early 14c., from Old French venquis (past tense), and vencus (p.p.), from veintre "defeat," from Latin vincere "defeat" (see victor). Influenced in Middle English by Middle French vainquiss-, present stem of vainquir "conquer," from Old French vainkir, alteration of veintre. Related: Vanquished; vanquishing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper