top of page



How to pronounce inflict (audio)


Monster Trucks in Space

Dictionary definition of inflict

To cause or impose something harmful, painful, or undesirable upon someone or something.
"The vicious dog could inflict serious injuries if not properly restrained."

#1 New Release on Amazon!

Detailed meaning of inflict

It involves deliberately subjecting another person, creature, or entity to suffering, injury, punishment, or negative consequences. Inflicting often implies the exercise of power, control, or force in order to bring about harm or hardship. The action may be physical, emotional, or psychological in nature, and it can range from inflicting pain or injury to imposing punishment, damage, or distress. Inflicting can occur through direct actions, such as physical violence, or through indirect means, such as inflicting emotional pain through hurtful words or actions. The intent behind inflicting is to cause harm or have a negative impact on the target, often driven by motives such as revenge, control, or dominance.

Example sentences containing inflict

1. The villain will inflict pain upon his enemies.
2. The punishment will inflict a severe penalty on the offender.
3. The disease can inflict long-lasting damage on the body.
4. The storm will inflict destruction upon the coastal towns.
5. The dictator's regime will inflict suffering on the oppressed population.
6. The accident can inflict serious injuries on the victims.

History and etymology of inflict

The verb 'inflict' has its etymological origins in Latin. It is derived from the Latin word 'inflictus,' which is the past participle of 'infligere.' 'Infligere' is formed by combining 'in' (meaning 'into') and 'fligere' (meaning 'to strike' or 'to hit'). Therefore, the etymology of 'inflict' essentially means 'to strike into' or 'to cause harm or pain through a forceful action.' Originally, it described the act of imposing harm, pain, or something undesirable upon someone or something through physical force. Over time, the term's meaning broadened to encompass not only physical harm but also psychological and emotional harm, making it applicable to a wide range of situations where harm or suffering is imposed, as we understand it in contemporary language.

Quiz: Find the meaning of inflict

Try Again!


Further usage examples of inflict

1. The boxer aims to inflict a knockout punch on his opponent.
2. The army will inflict heavy casualties on the enemy forces.
3. The natural disaster can inflict devastation on the affected region.
4. The insect's bite can inflict a painful reaction.
5. The hacker will inflict damage on the computer system.
6. The dictator's orders will inflict fear upon the citizens.
7. The wildfire can inflict harm on the surrounding wildlife.
8. The tornado will inflict destruction upon the homes in its path.
9. The terrorist attack will inflict terror on the unsuspecting crowd.
10. The poison will inflict a lethal effect on the victim.
11. The curse is said to inflict misfortune upon those who invoke it.
12. The car crash can inflict serious damage on the vehicles involved.
13. The war will inflict suffering on the civilian population.
14. The bully will inflict emotional trauma on his victims.



impose, spare, alleviate, relieve


Damage and Destruction, Middle School 13, Violence and Aggression

bottom of page