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swift and intense force:
the violence of a storm.
rough or injurious physical force, action, or treatment:
to die by violence.
an unjust or unwarranted exertion of force or power, as against rights or laws:
to take over a government by violence.
a act or proceeding.
rough or immoderate vehemence, as of feeling or language:
the violence of his hatred.
damage through distortion or unwarranted alteration:
to do editorial violence to a text.
Contemporary Examples

It also will benefit from the spillover of violence that is all but inevitable from Syria into Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq, and Jordan.
Al Qaeda’s Arab Comeback: Capitalizing on Chaos in Syria, Mali Bruce Riedel July 29, 2012

The life of the club owner was something Leonard left behind, the noise and violence drifting into lore.
The Stacks: How Leonard Chess Helped Make Muddy Waters Alex Belth August 1, 2014

Companies are also intolerant of violence in the workplace because it undermines workforce stability and hampers productivity.
How Your Company Can End Violence Against Girls Gary Cohen October 8, 2014

In Tripoli the violence has just worsened, with government offices closed, shops and gas stations shuttered.
U.S. Diplomats and Marines Close Embassy and Flee Libya Fighting Jamie Dettmer July 26, 2014

The number of rapes has diminished since, but the violence continues, with very few perpetrators held responsible.
Congo’s Feminist Fight Linda Bird Francke July 6, 2010

Historical Examples

In his violence Philip tore at his breast, and dragged something from beneath his shirt.
The Manxman Hall Caine

In view of the violence you made use of, I consider that you owe my son an apology.
Brave and Bold Horatio Alger

But he regretted his violence and told her so, which was fatal, or so it seemed to me.
Margarita’s Soul Ingraham Lovell

I don’t know what to write, about your answering that man of violence.
Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9) Samuel Richardson

In the Asiatic Cusha-Dwip they supported themselves by violence and rapine.
The God-Idea of the Ancients Eliza Burt Gamble

the exercise or an instance of physical force, usually effecting or intended to effect injuries, destruction, etc
powerful, untamed, or devastating force: the violence of the sea
great strength of feeling, as in language, etc; fervour
an unjust, unwarranted, or unlawful display of force, esp such as tends to overawe or intimidate
do violence to

to inflict harm upon; damage or violate: they did violence to the prisoners
to distort or twist the sense or intention of: the reporters did violence to my speech


late 13c., “physical force used to inflict injury or damage,” from Anglo-French and Old French violence, from Latin violentia “vehemence, impetuosity,” from violentus “vehement, forcible,” probably related to violare (see violation). Weakened sense of “improper treatment” is attested from 1590s.


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