Definition of tear gas in English:

tear gas


mass noun
  • Gas that causes severe irritation to the eyes, chiefly used in riot control to force crowds to disperse.

    ‘police used water cannon and tear gas against demonstrators’
    as modifier ‘a tear-gas canister’
    • ‘He told the court he had ordered the use of tear gas and rubber bullets to quell rioting prisoners but not firearms.’
    • ‘Riot police were finally mobilised and dispersed the protesters using tear gas.’
    • ‘Indonesian police fired warning shots, tear gas and water cannon to try and disperse the crowd.’
    • ‘Eggs were thrown at the British consulate in Venice and police fired tear gas to disperse demonstrators.’
    • ‘As protestors began to march, riot police used tear gas and water cannons to contain the students on campus.’
    • ‘I treated so many injuries from people hit by tear gas canisters and also those hit by rubber or plastic bullets.’
    • ‘Police officers fired tear gas and rubber bullets into the crowd, and used water canons to break up the protest.’
    • ‘Street battles developed with police using water cannon and tear gas against the demonstrators.’
    • ‘The security forces countered with tear gas and water cannons to try to disperse the crowd.’
    • ‘Both demonstrations ended with riot police spraying tear gas on the crowd.’
    • ‘Water cannons, tear gas and rubber bullets were used against peaceful protesters.’
    • ‘Police and military forces tried to disperse the crowd with gunshots, water cannons and tear gas.’
    • ‘They used tear gas and water cannons in an attempt to disperse the protesters.’
    • ‘Police threw tear gas canisters into the crowd, injuring some of the workers.’
    • ‘Police responded with water-cannon trucks, tear gas and four-inch plastic bullets.’
    • ‘A special vehicle has been developed, armed with a machine gun and multiple tear gas launchers.’
    • ‘There were stones and rubber bullets and tear gas canisters and a trampled doll in the street.’
    • ‘Police wielded batons and lobbed tear gas shells to disperse crowds and take control of the streets.’
    • ‘At least five people suffered minor injuries in the unrest as riot police fired tear gas into the crowd.’
    • ‘Police resorted to a lathicharge and fired 15 rounds of tear gas shells to disperse the mob.’


[with object]
  • Attack with tear gas.

    ‘he and his crew were tear-gassed’
    • ‘At the mail centre at Johannesburg International Airport, striking workers were tear-gassed, arrested and later released.’
    • ‘At this point the imaginary cops are throwing me down and tear-gassing me, so I retreat from the Wonderful World of My Imagination, back into the far-safer reality.’
    • ‘Military soldiers arrived and tear-gassed the protesting farmers.’
    • ‘I've seen my daughter's childhood totally destroyed, living in fear, being tear-gassed, and living under curfew.’
    • ‘On the same day, two elderly Palestinian men sitting in front of bulldozers briefly stopped construction in the Salfit region, before the men were tear-gassed.’
    • ‘Assuming the hole hasn't been closed (and cockpit access isn't bolted down), what's to stop someone from tear-gassing everyone on board and gaining control again?’
    • ‘Scores of children were killed, maimed, jailed and tear-gassed by apartheid police during the uprising.’
    • ‘However, after the incident when villagers were shifting the injured to District Hospital Doda police tear-gassed them in the town, which aggravated the problem, said reports.’
    • ‘Like us, they were tear-gassed; today we know that tear gas is carcinogenic and teratrogenic.’
    • ‘In the most shocking example, a group of pacifist Christian anti-debt campaigners, accompanied by children, were tear-gassed simply, it seemed, for being there.’
    • ‘Starting at 10 am and finishing when the police tear-gassed the bar, England fans drank all day, with many bars running out of draught beer.’
    • ‘They tear-gassed the offices and harassed reporters.’
    • ‘If it was cars or clothes on offer, they would be tear-gassing the mob as they surged across the forecourts of Ireland's garages, cash in hand.’
    • ‘She almost guaranteed that we would be tear-gassed, but everyone would be looking out for it, and would work together to make sure people stayed safe and remained calm.’
    • ‘Clashes took place outside the Maradana police station in Colombo, where police tear-gassed demonstrators and baton charged the crowd.’
    • ‘Some protestors were still shouting the slogan ‘No violence, the world is watching’ as the police tear-gassed demonstrators and bodily picked them off the street.’
    • ‘South African police tear-gassed churchgoers and arrested at least three worshippers in a black township near Johannesburg.’
    • ‘The television blares images of police tear-gassing blockades on street corners only a few blocks away.’
    • ‘If they were going to be tear-gassed or pepper-sprayed, then they wouldn't have to change their clothes and it wouldn't burn their skin.’
    • ‘It was outrageous, he says happily: He was tear-gassed by the police as he sat on the ground meditating.’


tear gas