threaten
Pronunciation
  • enPR: thrĕt′n̩, IPA: /ˈθɹɛt.n̩/
Verb

threaten (threatens, present participle threatening; past and past participle threatened)

  1. To make a threat against someone; to use threats.
    He threatened me with a knife.
  2. To menace, or be dangerous.
    The rocks threatened the ship's survival.
  3. To portend, or give a warning of.
    The black clouds threatened heavy rain.
  4. (figuratively) To be close to equaling or surpassing (a record, etc.)
    • 2000, Lew Freedman, Diamonds in the Rough: Baseball Stories from Alaska, ISBN 0945397828, page 69
      The player quickly surmised that things weren't kosher and the suddenly wiser ballplayer threatened the world record for the fifty-yard dash as he sought safety. As Reynolds dived into the van, Dietz and the other players rolled with laughter.
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