What does destroy mean?

Definitions for destroy

Here are all the possible meanings and translations of the word destroy.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. destroy, destructverb

    do away with, cause the destruction or undoing of

    "The fire destroyed the house"

  2. destroy, ruinverb

    destroy completely; damage irreparably

    "You have ruined my car by pouring sugar in the tank!"; "The tears ruined her make-up"

  3. demolish, destroyverb

    defeat soundly

    "The home team demolished the visitors"

  4. destroy, put downverb

    put (an animal) to death

    "The customs agents destroyed the dog that was found to be rabid"; "the sick cat had to be put down"


  1. destroyverb

    To cause destruction.

    Hooligans destroy unprovoked

  2. destroyverb

    To neutralize, undo a property or condition.

    Smoking destroys the natural subtlety of the palate

  3. destroyverb

    To put down or euthanize.

    Destroying a rabid dog is required by law.

  4. destroyverb

    To defeat soundly.

  5. destroyverb

    To remove data.

    The memory leak happened because we forgot to destroy the temporary lists.

  6. Etymology: destroyen, from destruire,, from Classical destruo, from de- + struo.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To DESTROYverb

    Etymology: destruo, Latin; destruire, French.

    The lord will destroy this city. Gen. xix. 14.

    Solyman sent a great part of his army out of the main unto the island, which burnt and destroyed the country villages. Richard Knolles, History of the Turks.

    A people, great and many, and tall as the Anakims; but the Lord destroyed them before them, and they succeeded them, and dwelt in their stead. Deutr. ii. 21.

    ’Tis safer to be that which we destroy,
    Than by destruction dwell in doubtful joy. William Shakespeare, Macbeth.

    The wise providence hath placed a certain antipathy between some animals and many insects, whereby they delight in their destruction, though they use them not as food; as the peacock destroys snakes and adders; the weasel, mice and rats; spiders, flies; and some sorts of flies destroy spiders. Matthew Hale.

    Do we not see that slothful, intemperate and incontinent persons destroy their bodies with diseases, their reputations with disgrace, and their faculties with want? Richard Bentley.

    There will be as many sovereigns as fathers: the mother too hath her title, which destroys the sovereignty of one supreme monarch. John Locke.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Destroyverb

    to unbuild; to pull or tear down; to separate virulently into its constituent parts; to break up the structure and organic existence of; to demolish

  2. Destroyverb

    to ruin; to bring to naught; to put an end to; to annihilate; to consume

  3. Destroyverb

    to put an end to the existence, prosperity, or beauty of; to kill


  1. Destroy

    Destroy! was an American crust punk band from Minneapolis from 1988 to 1994. Vocalist Felix Havoc founded Havoc Records in 1992 as a vehicle for Destroy!'s Burn this Racist System Down 7" EP.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Destroy

    de-stroy′, v.i. to unbuild or pull down: to overturn: to ruin: to put an end to:—pr.p. destroy′ing:—pa.p. destroyed′.—n. Destroy′er. [O. Fr. destruire (Fr. détruire)—L. destruĕre, destructumde, down, and struĕre, to build.]

Suggested Resources

  1. destroy

    Song lyrics by destroy -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by destroy on the Lyrics.com website.

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British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'destroy' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #4472

  2. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'destroy' in Verbs Frequency: #334

How to pronounce destroy?

How to say destroy in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of destroy in Chaldean Numerology is: 8

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of destroy in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of destroy in a Sentence

  1. Ait Bahmed partner:

    (The villagers) have to be very aware that development doesn't destroy their rich culture. And that's one of the reasons tourists come here. So they also have to understand that they mustn't spoil the environment, both physical environment and cultural environment, otherwise you'll spoil the goose that lays the golden egg.

  2. Pavlo Klimkin:

    Russia very consistently tries to present Ukraine as some kind of radical reality that does not support human rights. We're trying very actively to destroy these efforts by Russia, the atmosphere of tolerance must be preserved so as not to let Russia ... do what it consistently does.

  3. Brett Bodiford:

    There’s something about Jenna -- she’s not a talker, she’s always been shy -- but people are inspired by her, you can go through bad things but it doesn't have to destroy you. And she is the picture of that.

  4. Michael Cohen:

    Doc Ronny -- you know, we call Doc Ronny Doc Ronny, we call Doc Ronny Doc Ronny. Doc Ronny's an admiral, highly respected, a real leader, you know, these are all false accusations that were made. These are false and they're trying to destroy a man. By the way, I did say welcome to Washington. Welcome to the swamp. Welcome to the world of politics.

  5. Kim Kardashian:

    I really don’t care about the criticism, i mean, my reputation over someone’s life? Destroy me then. I really don’t care. It was not even an option. And he did the right thing.

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Translations for destroy

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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    the verbal act of urging on
    • A. allogamy
    • B. impounding
    • C. tithe
    • D. instigation

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