Definition of dismember in English:

dismember

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1Cut off the limbs of (a person or animal)

    ‘he watched a doctor dismember the body’
    ‘a dismembered corpse’
    • ‘Thompson, who denies murder, then allegedly dismembered the body before burying the remains in the Lake District.’
    • ‘Take a pile of mystery keys, dismembered action figures, dead flashlights, assorted calculators and undeveloped rolls of film.’
    • ‘A Yorkshireman suspected of dismembering a man then fleeing to the United States was waiting to return to the UK last night after officially waiving his right to fight extradition.’
    • ‘He also dismembers victims and attaches their limbs to car batteries to make them twitch.’
    • ‘In the past, the gang has threatened to kidnap and dismember the boy.’
    • ‘The official said the suspects had admitted to making an appointment to meet the car dealer and then shooting him, dismembering him and scattering the body parts around eastern Moscow.’
    • ‘The decision to dismember the body and deposit the parts in Galveston Bay, is highly incriminating.’
    • ‘In hospitals, doctors dismember their patients.’
    • ‘I am astonished to see it's the partly buried, dismembered body of a woman.’
    • ‘He was not there when the child was born, he was not there when the child died and he was not there when the child was dismembered and buried?’
    • ‘Prosecutors said he strangled him and later dismembered his girlfriend in Greece in 1997.’
    • ‘It's one thing to watch people being dismembered on screen.’
    • ‘The man accused of murdering and dismembering another man after stabbing him through the heart may have had some knowledge of butchery, a court heard.’
    • ‘He also admitted to dismembering a six-year-old child.’
    • ‘A TEN-year-old schoolgirl yesterday told a hushed court how she had seen the man accused of murdering and dismembering another man beat her mother.’
    • ‘I carried on with the body much like before, disemboweling and dismembering the boy.’
    • ‘They also raise extraordinary philosophical issues; like whether extracting them from a test-tube embryo is tantamount to dismembering a baby.’
    • ‘In the old vegetation myths the god is dismembered, dies, and is buried as a sacrifice that generates new life, freeing the waters and restoring life to the Waste Land.’
    • ‘A very straightforward narrative told with understated cinematic technique, this is not an excuse to show off how cool it can be to dismember a character using computer graphics.’
    • ‘Horses are dismembered, arrows slice through necks, and swift blades render unexpected carnage.’
    disjoint, joint, cut off the limbs of
    View synonyms
  • 2Partition or divide up (a territory or organization)

    ‘the winning powers of World War I set out to dismember the Ottoman Empire’
    • ‘When in 1903 Leo XIII died and the Patriarch of Venice ascended to St Peter's throne as Pius X, the Vatican dismembered the political arm of the organization for good.’
    • ‘We were the ones that brought the country to its independence in 1923, by a treaty for dismembering the old Ottoman Empire.’
    • ‘Germany, too, was dismembered, divided, stripped of colonies, bankrupted by war reparations, forced to confess full moral guilt for the war.’
    • ‘This problem is of principal importance to Russia as long as there are forces that intend to resort to a strategy of dismembering this country to prevent it from emerging as a strong competitor, especially a superpower.’
    • ‘The European empires were dismembered by nationalist movements, with support from lawyers, journalists, unions, and the churches.’
    • ‘In 1102 Henry I broke the sons of Roger of Montgomery, earl of Shrewsbury, and dismembered their father's marcher ‘empire’.’
    • ‘Austria-Hungary lost 1.3 million military lives and the victorious western Allies dismembered its empire.’
    • ‘Currency stabilization was a top economic priority after World War l in the dismembered Austro-Hungarian Empire.’
    • ‘So the lands of the dismembered Yugoslav state became not only the scene of Europe's greatest resistance struggle, but also one of its bloodiest civil wars.’
    • ‘Most German commentators now regard the dismembering of the Kirch empire as a foregone conclusion, leaving other sports and TV companies across Europe facing an uncertain future.’
    • ‘The kingdom of the Greeks is now dismembered by them, and deprived of territory so vast in extent that it can not be traversed in a march of two months.’
    • ‘It was a particular grief for him to see the army to which he had devoted his life dismembered by partition in 1947.’
    • ‘After World War I, England and France dismembered the Ottoman Empire and carved out Iraq and other states as pawns of European colonial interests.’

Origin

Middle English: from Old French desmembrer, based on Latin dis- ‘apart’ + membrum ‘limb’.

Pronunciation

dismember

/dɪsˈmɛmbə/