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From Latin obiūrgātōrius, from obiūrgō (I rebuke).


  • (US) IPA(key): /ɒbˈd͡ʒʌɹ.ɡə.tɒ.ɹi/


objurgatory (comparative more objurgatory, superlative most objurgatory)

  1. Strongly rebuking or scolding.[1]
    Synonyms: reprehensive, reproachful, reproving
    • 1644, Anthony Burgess, The Magistrates Commission from Heaven, London: Thomas Underhill, pp. 5-6,[2]
      it is a place that is quoted out of the Psalme: If he called them Gods [] Against whom the word of God came: and certainly, if you consult with the Psalme, That seemeth to be reprehensory and objurgatory; to those that were Governours; and our Saviours argument is stronger: If he calls them, against whom the word of God came; came condemning of them, and chiding of them, and reprooving of them; if he calls them Gods, then is it any great matter that I am called God?
    • 1784, Thomas Tyers, “A Biographical Sketch of Dr. Samuel Johnson,” The New Annual Register, Volume 5, p. 33,[3]
      On hearing that this literary lady [] was likely to be courted into matrimony a second time, Johnson set himself to prevent it, and wrote her a letter, as full of friendship as her heart was of affection; to which, or to a second letter of the objurgatory kind, it is said, she made a spirited reply.
    • 1859, George Eliot [pseudonym; Mary Ann Evans], chapter 6, in Adam Bede [], volume I, Edinburgh; London: William Blackwood and Sons, OCLC 2108290, book first, page 137:
      “Cold, is it, my darling? Bless your sweet face!” said Mrs. Poyser, who was remarkable for the facility with which she could relapse from her official objurgatory tone to one of fondness or of friendly converse.
      check it out online
    • 1980, Anthony Burgess, Earthly Powers, Penguin, 1981, Chapter 36, p. 257,[4]
      The zombie son brought him in the phantom car: we heard objurgatory Tamil and metallic slaps before it sped off, too fast to be possible.

Related terms[edit]


  1. ^ Thomas Blount, Glossographia, London: George Sawbridge, 1661: “Objurgatory [] pertaining to chiding, checking or rebuking.”[1]