Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


To decry is to cry down, in some noisy, public, or conspicuous manner.

I only know that they will all cry down the next ministry when this one is destroyed.

When all was still, he would become a Valkyrie and cry down the chimney.

There came a cry down the platform: "En voiture, messieurs!"

It is not fair, to cry down things which are harmless in themselves, because evil-disposed men may turn them to bad account.

It was to their interest to cry down the equivalence of silver; they paid less and received more.

But just this manifest truth, the Teutomaniacs and sophists, suddenly developed into bigots, sought to obscure and cry down.

Yet they would gladly persecute those who attempt to cry down the bad arguments.

She said death to herself, and the word echoed inside her like a cry down a long hall.

The friends of Miss Penrhys were ill advised in trying to cry down a man like my father.


early 13c., "beg, implore," from Old French crier, from Vulgar Latin *critare, from Latin quiritare "to wail, shriek" (source of Italian gridare, Old Spanish cridar, Spanish and Portuguese gritar), of uncertain origin; perhaps a variant of quirritare "to squeal like a pig," from *quis, echoic of squealing, despite ancient folk etymology that traces it to "call for the help of the Quirites," the Roman constabulary. The meaning was extended 13c. to weep, which it largely replaced by 16c. Related: Cried; crying.

Most languages, in common with English, use the general word for "cry out, shout, wail" to also mean "weep, shed tears to express pain or grief." Romance and Slavic, however, use words for this whose ultimate meaning is "beat (the breast)," cf. French pleurer, Spanish llorar, both from Latin plorare "cry aloud," but probably originally plodere "beat, clap the hands." Also Italian piangere (cognate with French plaindre "lament, pity") from Latin plangere, originally "beat," but especially of the breast, as a sign of grief. U.S. colloquial for crying out loud is 1924, probably another euphemism for for Christ's sake.


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.