Definition of rebuke in US English:

rebuke

verb

[with object]
  • Express sharp disapproval or criticism of (someone) because of their behavior or actions.

    ‘she had rebuked him for drinking too much’
    ‘the judge publicly rebuked the jury’
    • ‘Other trade union leaders were also rebuked and reprimanded, with some receiving kicks and punches.’
    • ‘He did and the judge rebuked him for it, but the point got made.’
    • ‘He would stare at her, apologising for leaving her on the landing that day, yet rebuking her for her behaviour.’
    • ‘Instead, it merely rebuked him for his refusal to co-operate, even as a former MP.’
    • ‘He was criticized, he was rebuked by others in the Pentagon at the time.’
    • ‘On another occasion a pair of rabbis turned up and rebuked me for placing Jewish children in Christian foster homes.’
    • ‘This criminal sensed His royalty and rebuked his fellow criminal.’
    • ‘I haven't read the article but have read the outrageous reports rebuking the author.’
    • ‘As though rebuking her, she felt the sharp prick of a needle on her arm.’
    • ‘But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter.’
    • ‘He rebuked the people running the review and said he expected local NHS bosses to ‘engage with local communities’.’
    • ‘For him it was always the issues that were important, but he was definitely rebuking his old friend, even though he did not name him.’
    • ‘Britain's largest charity has rebuked Prince Charles for refusing to protect an endangered species of bird at the Balmoral estate.’
    • ‘In point of fact, he was rebuked for his support of bringing about a volunteer force, at least considering it.’
    • ‘He immediately went into the circling routine, feeling the material of my jacket and after a lot of tut tutting rebuked me for my cheap shoes which didn't match my suit.’
    • ‘But the king-maker promptly rebuked him, saying that he didn't want his wife to lose her job.’
    • ‘When he was incredibly late at the beginning, the judge rebuked him on that day about being late.’
    • ‘So when I went up to them at the counter where the pair were perched on high stools I was rebuked for daring to open my mouth.’
    • ‘Before rebuking someone, ask yourself, ‘Why am I doing this?’’
    • ‘As she continued to live a western lifestyle, he rebuked her for not being a good Muslim.’
    reprimand, reproach, scold, admonish, reprove, remonstrate with, chastise, chide, upbraid, berate, take to task, pull up, castigate, lambaste, read someone the riot act, give someone a piece of one's mind, haul over the coals, criticize, censure
    View synonyms

noun

  • An expression of sharp disapproval or criticism.

    ‘he hadn't meant it as a rebuke, but Neil flinched’
    • ‘He had more expected a sharp rebuke for sleeping late, maybe even a none-too-gentle reminder in the form of a hand to his backside.’
    • ‘Ahern has delivered several sharp rebukes to his parliamentary party recently.’
    • ‘Under the guise of political virtue, it scolds, berates, rebukes, criticizes, and has a high old time doing it.’
    • ‘His comments brought a swift rebuke from both state and federal National Party MPs.’
    • ‘I tried to explain my doubtless feeble joke, but my critic was having none of it, delivering her rebuke and, having had her stern say, ringing off.’
    • ‘Bear in mind, then, that expressions of regret over the defilement of sacred images are likely to attract rebukes from certain ‘modern’ and ‘spiritual’ types of Westerner.’
    • ‘God will often use men to offer a verbal rebuke through prophecy or admonishment before disciplining us.’
    • ‘And it delivered not one but two stern rebukes to states over what justices considered unfair procedures for sentencing people to death.’
    • ‘He also delivered a sharp rebuke to those who argued against the day on profit grounds.’
    • ‘Now capitalism is receiving severe rebukes, with its critics given powerful evidence that they are right in seeing it as a system that works for insiders and their cronies.’
    • ‘The 59-year-old was at the centre of all the wrong publicity six years ago, when his comments about Irish women drew strong rebukes and criticism.’
    • ‘I've delivered her a stern rebuke and promised I'll be back to conduct regular inspections.’
    • ‘Chelsea flushes at the mild rebuke, though she knows it's only the truth.’
    • ‘I opened my mouth for a sharp rebuke but just then the waitress appeared, bringing our plates of burgers and fries.’
    • ‘Indeed the Academy issued a rare rebuke of the studio for its campaign.’
    • ‘His declaration is the first time a sitting Conservative MP has advocated a complete break with the EU and is sure to provoke a sharp rebuke from party whips.’
    • ‘I should have been sat in front of the television making mental notes and issuing sharp rebukes to his paper thin justifications for war.’
    • ‘This rebuke flew in the face of Hamilton's express words in his Report.’
    • ‘The Press Council delivered one of its strongest rebukes in its 30 year history.’
    reprimand, reproach, reproof, scolding, admonishment, admonition, reproval, remonstration, lecture, upbraiding, castigation, lambasting, criticism, censure
    View synonyms

Origin

Middle English (originally in the sense ‘force back, repress’): from Anglo-Norman French and Old Northern French rebuker, from re- ‘back, down’ + bukier ‘to beat’ (originally ‘cut down wood’, from Old French busche ‘log’).

Pronunciation

rebuke

/rəˈbyo͞ok//rəˈbjuk/