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- (transitive) To subdue someone by superior force.
- We overpowered the opposing army within a couple of hours.
- (transitive) To excel or exceed in power; to cause to yield; to subdue.
- Bright light overpowers the eyes.
- 1886, Peter Christen Asbjørnsen, H.L. Brækstad, transl., Folk and Fairy Tales, page 86:
- But the shrill wild cry of the heron overpowered the cries of all the other birds, whom it seemed to terrify; they were silent the moment they heard it, and a silence followed which made the interruption doubly unpleasant.
- (transitive) To render imperceptible by means of greater strength, intensity etc.
- The dish was OK, but the garlic slightly overpowered the herbs.
- 2011 December 15, Felicity Cloake, “How to cook the perfect nut roast”, in Guardian:
- Breadcrumbs seem to be the most popular choice, but Rose Elliot's recipe, in Vegetarian Christmas (as recommended by one of the three nice people who did tweet back, India Knight), doesn't quite convince as the centrepiece of the festive feast. It consists of two layers of ground cashew nuts, mixed with breadcrumbs, onions, nutmeg and vegetable stock, and separated by a vibrant green herb stuffing, the main ingredient of which is also bread. Although surprisingly moist, thanks to the stock (indeed, the contrast between the crisp exterior and the squidgy middle is horribly moreish), the combination of parsley, garlic and breadcrumbs reminds me of a very fancy loaf of garlic bread – and all but overpowers the sweet flavour of the cashews.
- (video games, transitive) To make excessively powerful.
- 2017 March 10, Adam Smith, “Reservoir Dogs: Bloody Days is smarter than you’d think”, in Rock, Paper, Shotgun:
- Rather than overpowering the characters or giving them some kind of slow-mo adrenalin abilities, Bloody Days does the most unexpected thing: it introduces a genuinely smart tactical system.
- Antonym: nerf
overpower — see compel
subdue someone by superior force
excel or exceed in power
render imperceptible by means of greater strength