Definition of transfix in US English:



[with object]
  • 1usually be transfixedCause (someone) to become motionless with horror, wonder, or astonishment.

    ‘he was transfixed by the pain in her face’
    ‘she stared at him, transfixed’
    • ‘At one point I even forgot the band were there, I was so transfixed with the visuals, which included lots of period footage of railways.’
    • ‘Nobody else even batted an eyelid, but I was just transfixed, with chills literally running up my spine.’
    • ‘I was transfixed, wondering if the lead singer was male or female.’
    • ‘She was transfixed by that veiled emerald gaze, frozen to the spot, unable to move.’
    • ‘And I was transfixed, almost hypnotised by the grotesque scene in front of me.’
    • ‘If people were not transfixed on the band, they at least ceased to idly chatter.’
    • ‘At night I am transfixed by the gentle motion of the great hull accompanied by the hypnotic creaking of richly-grained wood.’
    • ‘No-one else seemed much moved by this, but I was transfixed.’
    • ‘Kiko looks up almost painfully and I'm transfixed at the depth of horror I see in his blue eyes.’
    • ‘I was transfixed with fear and the sheer beauty of the scene.’
    • ‘But we're simultaneously transfixed by the scale of the event, excited by its uncommon nature.’
    • ‘As those of you who have seen gamelan dance can imagine, I was totally transfixed.’
    • ‘We were transfixed, and used to wonder whether all the women in England were like that.’
    • ‘I quickly asked her where the pain was, and while transfixing me with a hard look, she pointed to her chest.’
    • ‘Will we ever know all the reasons why people are transfixed by these images?’
    • ‘If a story transfixes Sydney tabloids, then it transfixes me.’
    • ‘I was transfixed by the jostling crowds, the blasting horns.’
    • ‘I was too transfixed on his twitch to let that happen.’
    • ‘By the time I got to the Mexican trip toward the end of the novel, I was transfixed.’
    • ‘Shoppers in the High Street were confused by the police presence and scores of people were transfixed on the sky as the helicopter hovered above.’
    mesmerize, hypnotize, spellbind, bewitch, captivate, entrance, enthral, fascinate, engross, enrapture, stun, stupefy, astound, grip, root someone to the spot, stop someone dead, stop someone in their tracks
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  • 2Pierce with a sharp implement or weapon.

    ‘a field mouse is transfixed by the curved talons of an owl’
    • ‘Plunging from his cheetah-drawn chariot, Bacchus looses arrows of longing from his eyes at Ariadne, and transfixes her in mid-flight.’
    • ‘Alas for poor Bill, more arrows would soon pierce him than transfixed Saint Sebastian.’
    impale, stab, spear, pierce, spike, skewer, stick, gore, pin, bayonet, harpoon, lance, run through, puncture, perforate
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Late 16th century (in transfix (sense 2)): from Latin transfix- ‘pierced through’, from the verb transfigere, from trans- ‘across’ + figere ‘fix, fasten’.