(noun, verb)


1. cruel or inhumane treatment

- the child showed signs of physical abuse

Similar word(s): maltreatment

Definition categories: act, mistreatment

2. a rude expression intended to offend or hurt

- when a student made a stupid mistake he spared them no abuse

Similar word(s): contumely, insult, revilement, vilification

Definition categories: communication, discourtesy, disrespect

3. improper or excessive use

- alcohol abuse

- the abuse of public funds

Similar word(s): misuse

Definition categories: act, employment, exercise, usage, use, utilisation, utilization

Sentences with abuse as a noun:

- All abuse, whether physical, verbal, psychological or sexual, is bad.


1. treat badly

- This boss abuses his workers

Similar word(s): maltreat, mistreat, step

Definition categories: social, handle, treat

2. change the inherent purpose or function of something

- Don't abuse the system

Similar word(s): misuse, pervert

Definition categories: change, expend, use

3. use foul or abusive language towards

- The actress abused the policeman who gave her a parking ticket

Similar word(s): blackguard, clapperclaw, shout

Definition categories: communication, assail, assault, attack, round, snipe

4. use wrongly or improperly or excessively

- Her husband often abuses alcohol

- while she was pregnant, she abused drugs

Definition categories: change, expend, use