Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1300-1400
Origin: maul 'hammer' (13-20 centuries), from Old French mail, from Latin malleus

maul

verb
     
maul [transitive]
1 if an animal mauls someone, it injures them badly by tearing their flesh:
A mentally ill man was mauled after climbing into the lions' enclosure at London Zoo.
2 to strongly criticize something, especially a new book, play etc:
Her latest book was absolutely mauled by the critics.
3 to touch someone in a rough sexual way which they think is unpleasant:
What makes you think you've got the right to maul me like that?
4 informal to defeat someone very easily - used especially in sports reports:
Stanford have looked quite good lately. They absolutely mauled Notre Dame last weekend.
mauling noun [singular]
Juppe got a mauling over the government's failure to fulfil its promises.

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