Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1400-1500
Language: French
Origin: abuser, from Latin abusus, past participle of abuti, from ab- 'away' + uti 'to use'

abuse

2 verb
     
a‧buse2 [transitive]
1 to treat someone in a cruel and violent way, often sexually
sexually/physically abused
She was sexually abused as a child.
2 to deliberately use something for the wrong purpose or for your own advantage:
Williams abused his position as Mayor to give jobs to his friends.
Morris abused the trust the firm had shown in him.
people who abuse the system
abuse alcohol/drugs
The proportion of drinkers who abuse alcohol is actually quite small.
3 to say rude or offensive things to someone [= insult]:
Many soldiers in Belfast are verbally abused.
He came to the help of another driver who was being racially abused by three white passengers.
4 to treat something so badly that you start to destroy it:
James abused his body for years with heroin and cocaine.
abuser noun [countable]

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