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 (hə-răs′, hăr′əs)
tr.v. ha·rassed, ha·rass·ing, ha·rass·es
1. To subject (another) to hostile or prejudicial remarks or actions; pressure or intimidate.
2. To irritate or torment persistently: His mind was harassed by doubts and misgivings.
3. To make repeated attacks or raids on (an enemy, for example).

[French harasser, from Old French (a la) harache, (a la) harace (as in courre a la harache, to chase) : hare, call used to set dogs on (of Germanic origin; see ko- in Indo-European roots) + -ache, -ace, deprecative n. suff.]

ha·rass′er n.
ha·rass′ment n.
Synonyms: harass, harry, hound, badger, pester, plague
These verbs mean to trouble persistently or incessantly. Harass and harry imply systematic persecution by besieging with repeated annoyances, threats, or demands: The landlord harassed the tenants who were behind in their rent. "John Adams and John Quincy Adams, pillars of personal rectitude, were harried throughout their presidencies by accusations of corruption, fraud, and abuses of power" (Alan Brinkley and Davis Dyer).
Hound suggests unrelenting pursuit to gain a desired end: Reporters hounded the celebrity for an interview. To badger is to nag or entreat persistently: The child badgered his parents for a new bicycle. To pester is to inflict a succession of petty annoyances: "How she would have pursued and pestered me with questions and surmises" (Charlotte Brontë).
Plague refers to a problem likened to a noxious disease: "As I have no estate, I am plagued with no tenants or stewards" (Henry Fielding).
Usage Note: The pronunciation of harass with stress on the first syllable (rhyming roughly with Paris) is the older, traditional pronunciation. The pronunciation with stress on the second syllable (rhyming roughly with surpass) is a newer pronunciation that first occurred in American English. Its use has steadily increased since the mid-1900s. In our 1987 survey, 50 percent of the Usage Panel preferred the pronunciation with stress on the first syllable, and 50 percent preferred stress on the second syllable. Fourteen years later, in our 2001 survey, preference for stress on the first syllable dropped to 30 percent while preference for stress on the second syllable rose to 70 percent. The results from our 2013 survey suggest that this trend away from the traditional pronunciation has continued: only 10 percent preferred the stress on the first syllable, whereas 90 percent preferred the pronunciation with the stress on the second syllable. In fact, in 2013, 35 percent of the Panel considered the pronunciation with the stress on the first syllable to be unacceptable. The original pronunciation has almost completely given way in only a few decades, at least in the United States.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.harasser - a persistent tormentor
persecutor, tormenter, tormentor - someone who torments
2.harasser - a persistent attacker; "the harassers were not members of the regular army"
aggressor, assailant, assaulter, attacker - someone who attacks
References in periodicals archive ?
The case went viral after a video of the victim being assaulted by the harasser was posted online and used as material in controversial TV host Reham Saeed's TV programme "Sabaya El-Kheir" on the privately-owned Al-Nahar channel.
Col Al Ajel said complaints of harassment in public areas are very few but noted that sometimes the harasser verbally harasses the victim and in some cases touches the victim.
And confronting a harasser can be difficult or even dangerous for a bystander.
They keep walking and pretend they do not hear anything in an attempt to avoid confrontation with the harasser, as well as their family, who they fear would pressure them to cover even more and possibly prevent them from leaving home.
Presidential spokesman Ehab Badawi said the decree defines a sexual harasser as a person seeking to achieve "an interest of a sexual nature".
Face the harasser and scream and yell at him, let people see that he is a harasser, because this way she will protect herself and another woman from being in the same situation," she said, adding that women should also carry pepper spray and report the car license plates of harassers.
Constitution by wrongly labeling him a sexual harasser without a proper hearing or evidence.
In a May press release, FIRE charged that the Montana letter mandates "a breathtakingly broad definition of sexual harassment that makes virtually every student in the United States a harasser while ignoring the First Amendment" Any college getting any federal funding would have to obey.
Seek ways to be compassionate to the harasser and surprise him/her with understanding and acceptance (something that he/she may not be receiving).
Former City Council president, Ben Hueso, said that when DeMaio, one of the leading Republican candidates to replace alleged serial sexual harasser Filner, was in the City Council, he would allegedly leave the dais during meetings to masturbate in a men's room.
Rather than being interested in punishing their harasser, they were more interested in putting a stop to the undesirable behaviour itself.