Definition of revulsion in English:



mass noun
  • 1A sense of disgust and loathing.

    ‘news of the attack will be met with sorrow and revulsion’
    • ‘To some extent, the revulsion felt by blogging's first wave is based on this.’
    • ‘But it is not moral revulsion, let alone newsworthiness, that is animating the news media.’
    • ‘A wave of revulsion washed through my body and mind as I sat, motionless, mere inches from him.’
    • ‘We fear that many viewers will share Dr Weaver's revulsion at the ‘psycho’ who killed Lucy and maimed Carter.’
    • ‘Gripped by a sense of revulsion at the ongoing murder campaign, several thousand heeded his call and took to the street outside City Hall.’
    • ‘As Ken surveyed my body, revulsion led my retreat into our kitchenette, where I politely excused myself.’
    • ‘The absence of skin, odour and blood means that many visitors are surprised that they do not feel instinctive revulsion.’
    • ‘I feel utter revulsion at the people that did this.’
    • ‘Widespread public revulsion at the executions exacerbated a growing alienation from the British administration in Ireland.’
    • ‘My euphoria evaporated and was replaced by something closer to moral revulsion.’
    • ‘The prime minister's open display of contempt for democratic accountability has only deepened the revulsion felt towards him.’
    • ‘It came as a shock to me that not all men share this revulsion at body fat.’
    • ‘Instead, there are signs of growing public revulsion over assembly-line executions and rampant police brutality and corruption.’
    • ‘Now defendants in criminal cases often are charged with offences which would fill ordinary people with horror, disgust and revulsion.’
    • ‘Since the story centers on a disabled woman's body, revulsion is a culturally supported reaction.’
    • ‘It is hard not to feel a certain revulsion for so detached and apparently inhuman an attitude to childbearing.’
    • ‘If labelling is to be effective, it is important that embarrassment, revulsion and even disgust be generated in the public mind.’
    • ‘I understand the impulse to focus one's moral revulsion on the perpetrators.’
    • ‘It culminated in the Nazi racial hygiene experiments on Jews, which led to revulsion and the political stand against racism.’
    • ‘She raised her hand in front of her face and stared at it in shock and revulsion as she saw the drying blood there.’
    disgust, repulsion, abhorrence, repugnance, nausea, loathing, horror, hatred, detestation, aversion, abomination, distaste, antipathy, dislike, contempt, odium
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  • 2Medicine
    historical The drawing of disease or blood congestion from one part of the body to another, e.g. by counterirritation.

    • ‘From observing the extraordinary cures effected by the aid of revulsion medical men have been borne away too much by an attachment to this mode of treatment.’


Mid 16th century (in revulsion (sense 2)): from French, or from Latin revulsio(n-), from revuls- ‘torn out’, from the verb revellere (from re- ‘back’ + vellere ‘pull’). revulsion (sense 1) dates from the early 19th century.