Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Marked by, acting with, or resulting from great force: a violent attack.
  • adj. Having or showing great emotional force: violent dislike.
  • adj. Marked by intensity; extreme: violent pain; a violent squall. See Synonyms at intense.
  • adj. Caused by unexpected force or injury rather than by natural causes: a violent death.
  • adj. Tending to distort or injure meaning, phrasing, or intent.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Involving extreme force or motion.
  • adj. Involving physical conflict.
  • adj. Likely to use physical force.
  • adj. Intensely vivid.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Moving or acting with physical strength; urged or impelled with force; excited by strong feeling or passion; forcible; vehement; impetuous; fierce; furious; severe
  • adj. Acting, characterized, or produced by unjust or improper force; outrageous; unauthorized.
  • adj. Produced or effected by force; not spontaneous; unnatural; abnormal.
  • n. An assailant.
  • intransitive v. To be violent; to act violently.
  • transitive v. To urge with violence.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Characterized by strong and sudden physical force; impetuous; furious.
  • Produced, effected, or continued by force; accompanied by extraneous or unnatural force; unnatural.
  • Acting or produced by unlawful, unjust, or improper force; characterized by force or violence unlawfully exercised; rough; outrageous; not authorized.
  • Vehement mentally, or springing from such vehemence; fierce; passionate; furious.
  • In general, intense in any respect; extreme: as, a violent contrast; especially, of pain, acute.
  • Compelled; compulsory; not voluntary.
  • Poignant, exquisite.
  • n. One acting with violence.
  • To urge with violence.
  • To act or work with violence; be violent.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. acting with or marked by or resulting from great force or energy or emotional intensity
  • adj. (of colors or sounds) intensely vivid or loud
  • adj. marked by extreme intensity of emotions or convictions; inclined to react violently; fervid
  • adj. characterized by violence or bloodshed
  • adj. effected by force or injury rather than natural causes

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French, from Latin violentus, from vīs, vi-, force; see weiə- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old French violent, from Latin violentus, from vīs ("strength"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • I think the speaker used the term violent, did violence to what you're trying to accomplish in the House.

    CNN Transcript Feb 8, 2009

  • Beijing, wary of instability and the threat to the Communist Party's grip on power, often blames what it calls violent separatist groups in Xinjiang for attacks on police or other government targets.

    China sentences four to death for Xinjiang violence

  • But opposition parties and human-rights groups complain the likely victory of the ruling party is tainted by what they call a violent crackdown on supporters and party members.

    EU Finds Fault With Ethiopia Ballot

  • Significantly, he never used the word terrorism, but he hit hard on what he called violent extremism and its consequences.

    CNN Transcript Jun 4, 2009

  • Let's remember that what you call a violent past, that was at a time when thousands of people were being murdered by our government every month.

    CNN Transcript Nov 14, 2008

  • The FBI is now looking into what it calls a violent case of domestic terrorism.

    CNN Transcript Aug 4, 2008

  • Let's remember that what you call a violent past, that was at a time when thousands of people were being murdered by our government every month, and those of us who fought to end that war were actually on the right side.

    CNN Transcript Nov 14, 2008

  • "There is ample fact -- and we also have plenty of evidence -- proving that this incident was organized, premeditated, masterminded and incited by the Dalai clique," Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said today, in denouncing the Dalai Lama's supporters as instigators of what he described as violent protests that rocked the region in recent days.

    What They Are Saying

  • Mugabe has lashed out at Western support for what he called violent opposition activists and told his growing number of critics to "go hang."

    ANC Daily News Briefing

  • A defiant and angry President Robert Mugabe on Thursday lashed out at Western support for what he called violent opposition activists and told his growing number of critics to "go hang."

    ANC Daily News Briefing

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  • 'These violent delights have violent ends
    And in their triumph die, like fire and powder
    Which, as they kiss, consume.'

    -Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare

    February 20, 2008