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Alternative forms[edit]


From French agoniser, from Late Latin agonizare, from Ancient Greek ἀγωνίζομαι (agōnízomai, to fight, contend). See agony.



agonize (third-person singular simple present agonizes, present participle agonizing, simple past and past participle agonized)

  1. (intransitive) To writhe with agony; to suffer violent anguish.
  2. (intransitive) To struggle; to wrestle; to strive desperately, whether mentally or physically.
    • 1898, J. Meade Falkner, chapter 3, in Moonfleet, London, Toronto, Ont.: Jonathan Cape, published 1934:
      So I took a last stare round, agonizing to see if there was any way of escape; but the stone walls and roof were solid enough to crush me, and the stack of casks too closely packed to hide more than a rat.
  3. (transitive) To cause agony or anguish in someone.
    • 1935, George Orwell, A Clergyman’s Daughter, page 8:
      That dreadful bill [] was one of the chief torments of her life. At all hours of the night or day it was waiting just round the corner of her consciousness, ready to spring upon her and agonise her []

Related terms[edit]





  1. inflection of agonizar:
    1. first/third-person singular present subjunctive
    2. third-person singular imperative