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Disturb vs Abuse - What's the difference?

disturb | abuse |

As verbs the difference between disturb and abuse

is that disturb is to confuse a quiet, constant state or a calm, continuous flow, in particular: thoughts, actions or liquids while abuse is .

As a noun disturb

is (obsolete) disturbance.




(en verb)
  • to confuse a quiet, constant state or a calm, continuous flow, in particular: thoughts, actions or liquids.
  • The noisy ventilation disturbed me during the exam.
    The performance was disturbed twice by a ringing mobile phone.
    A school of fish disturbed the water.
  • to divert, redirect, or alter by disturbing.
  • A mudslide disturbed the course of the river.
    The trauma disturbed his mind.
  • * Milton
  • disturb his inmost counsels from their destined aim
  • to have a negative emotional impact; to cause emotional distress or confusion.
  • A disturbing film that tries to explore the mind of a serial killer.
    His behaviour is very disturbing .

    Derived terms

    * disturbance


  • (obsolete) disturbance
  • (Milton)



    Etymology 1

    From (etyl) abusen, then from either (etyl)


    (en noun)
  • Improper treatment or usage; application to a wrong or bad purpose; an unjust, corrupt or wrongful practice or custom.
  • *
  • All abuse , whether physical, verbal, psychological or sexual, is bad.
  • Misuse; improper use; perversion.
  • * 1788 , , Number 63
  • Liberty may be endangered by the abuses' of liberty, as well as by the ' abuses of power.
  • * {{quote-magazine, year=2012, month=March-April
  • , author=(Jan Sapp) , title=Race Finished , volume=100, issue=2, page=164 , magazine=(American Scientist) citation , passage=Few concepts are as emotionally charged as that of race. The word conjures up a mixture of associations—culture, ethnicity, genetics, subjugation, exclusion and persecution. But is the tragic history of efforts to define groups of people by race really a matter of the misuse of science, the abuse of a valid biological concept?}}
  • (obsolete) A delusion; an imposture; misrepresentation; deception.
  • *
  • Coarse, insulting speech; abusive language; language that unjustly or angrily vilifies.
  • *
  • (now, rare)   Catachresis.
  • Physical maltreatment; injury; cruel treatment.
  • Violation; defilement; rape; forcing of undesired sexual activity by one person on another, often on a repeated basis.
  • Usage notes
    * Typically followed by the word of .
    * invective, contumely, reproach, scurrility, insult, opprobrium
    Derived terms
    * abusefully * abuse of distress * alcohol abuse * child abuse * drug abuse * self-abuse

    Etymology 2

    From (etyl) abusen, from (etyl) abuser, from (etyl) .


  • To put to a wrong use; to misapply; to use improperly; to misuse; to use for a wrong purpose or end; to pervert; as, to abuse one's authority.
  • *
  • To injure; to maltreat; to hurt; to treat with cruelty, especially repeatedly.
  • *
  • To attack with coarse language; to insult; to revile; malign; to speak in an offensive manner to or about someone; to disparage.
  • * Macaulay
  • The tellers of news abused the general.
  • *
  • To imbibe a drug for a purpose other than it was intended; to intentionally take more of a drug than was prescribed for recreational reasons; to take illegal drugs habitually.
  • (archaic) To violate; defile; to rape.
  • (Spenser)
  • (obsolete) Misrepresent; adulterate.
  • *
  • (obsolete) To deceive; to trick; to impose on; misuse the confidence of.
  • * 1651-2 , , "Sermon VI, The House of Feasting; or, The Epicures Measures", in The works of Jeremy Taylor , Volume 1, page 283 (1831), edited by Thomas Smart Hughes
  • When Cyrus had espied Astyages and his fellows coming drunk from a banquet loaden with variety of follies and filthiness, their legs failing them, their eyes red and staring, cozened with a moist cloud and abused by a double object
  • (transitive, obsolete, Scotland) Disuse.
  • Synonyms
    * maltreat, injure, revile, reproach, vilify, vituperate, asperse, traduce, malign * See also
    Derived terms
    * abusable * abusage * abuser




    * English heteronyms ----