Definition of victim in English:



  • 1A person harmed, injured, or killed as a result of a crime, accident, or other event or action.

    ‘victims of domestic violence’
    ‘earthquake victims’
    • ‘I live in fear of being a victim of violent crime every time I step out of the door.’
    • ‘I wanted to give priority to the defense of immigrant women who are victims of domestic violence.’
    • ‘The victim he saw lying dead by a fox's lair would have been either a victim of a road accident or the victim of a youth with an airgun.’
    • ‘Here is the man who is first to raise money or organise events to help victims of crime or the needy, a man with human compassion.’
    • ‘This foundation supports child victims of violent crime and sudden loss of family.’
    • ‘The first two offences are committed only when a victim has suffered harm as a result of the criminal conduct.’
    • ‘Dr Lewis warned that victims of street crime could also suffer if public phones in the town were taken away.’
    • ‘Help groups have praised a campaign urging victims of domestic violence not to suffer in silence.’
    • ‘More than half of all workers in the region's local shops have been the victims of violent crime, a new survey has claimed.’
    • ‘Researchers at the University of York are studying the differing reactions of crime victims to their trauma.’
    • ‘Residents of North Yorkshire are half as likely to be the victim of a violent crime as people in the country as a whole.’
    • ‘Some manage to avoid insurance payments to cover the cost of compensating accident victims.’
    • ‘Last month funding was secured for another year to run confidential help-lines for victims of hate crimes.’
    • ‘The Nazis who ran the camp tried to hide their crimes by marching their victims away.’
    • ‘It estimates that one woman in four now suffers as a victim of domestic violence.’
    • ‘He was all ready to shaft the asbestos victims as he had the workers and other accident victims.’
    • ‘He also has the experience of saving many a life by rushing the victims of several accidents to hospital.’
    • ‘Also, victims of violent crime are having to wait far too long to receive their compensation.’
    • ‘The stroke victim may suffer brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke.’
    • ‘The victim of deteriorating mental health in his later life, he died in a mental hospital.’
    • ‘One of the key findings of the survey revealed fear of being a victim of violent crime did not make it into the top three.’
    • ‘Tragic mums whose children were victims of gun crime were today gathering at a unique event to tackle armed gangs.’
    • ‘He also helped set up the restorative justice scheme, whereby young offenders meet the victims of their crimes.’
    sufferer, injured party, casualty, injured person, wounded person
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    1. 1.1 A person who is tricked or duped.
      ‘the victim of a hoax’
      • ‘The latest victim to fall prey to a false chain mail campaign is the Coca-Cola Company.’
      • ‘But when he arrived in Delhi last July he discovered he was the victim of a hoax.’
      • ‘Now fraudsters are applying similar tricks against potential enterprise victims.’
      • ‘An initiative to stop bogus callers preying on elderly victims has been launched in Basildon today.’
      • ‘If that had any influence on me writing this, then I have just been the victim of subliminal advertising.’
      • ‘Hampshire police are launching a new campaign to cut down on the number of victims who fall prey to conmen and bogus callers.’
      • ‘I've seen it a million times in the clubs and been the victim of it a fair few times on the street.’
      • ‘With embarrassment, feeling a fool, I admit I was a victim of a Nigerian fraud.’
      • ‘The sheer expense of such an enterprise would mean the victim would never really suspect he was being tricked.’
      • ‘They are gulled by the oldest trick of all, the one that gets the victim to look somewhere else.’
      • ‘The latest MyTob email worms have adopted fresh tactics in an attempt to trick victims.’
      • ‘Malev has been the victim of a recent spate of bomb hoaxes and police are investigating.’
      • ‘In the cleverest financial or art frauds the victims do not even know they were duped.’
      • ‘In a bid to prevent further victims being targeted, a new scheme has been launched with banks and building societies.’
      • ‘Michael Jackson is just one of the victims in this deadly game of diversion.’
      • ‘Among the victims he duped were people from Lancashire, Bury and Nottinghamshire.’
      • ‘Anyone who has been the victim of psychological mind games will feel a cold shiver of recognition.’
      • ‘The counterpoint is that neat gamble; that all the victims have to do is ask if it's a trick.’
      dupe, easy target, easy prey, fair game, sitting target, everybody's fool, stooge, gull, fool, aunt sally
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    2. 1.2 A person who has come to feel helpless and passive in the face of misfortune or ill-treatment.
      ‘I saw myself as a victim’
      as modifier ‘a victim mentality’
      • ‘At the risk of sounding like a passive victim, I've just found myself acting in this way.’
      • ‘Franklin lies to Maria about the amounts and risks involved, but she is not a passive victim.’
      • ‘Essentially, you, the helpless victim, are in control of one or more castles.’
      • ‘But women have never been simply passive victims of either side of this process.’
      • ‘It made uncertainty a principle of government and reduced the regime's victims to helplessness.’
      • ‘Yet we know that even in such utterly abject circumstances, these people were not simply passive victims.’
      • ‘The predominant view of children from separated families is as vulnerable victims.’
      • ‘Unable to remain helpless victims any longer, the residents have taken up the step.’
      • ‘We want to be the capable authors of our work, not helpless victims of unplanned circumstance.’
      • ‘It would be easier to deal with Ms Rice as a helpless victim oppressed by a bunch of white bigots.’
      • ‘Requesting the state to protect women appears to declare women helpless victims.’
      • ‘In the real world, the people of Liverpool have no more of a victim mentality than the people of Norwich.’
    3. 1.3 A living creature killed as a religious sacrifice.
      ‘sacrificial victims for the ritual festivals’
      • ‘If not, and if some want to draw lots to choose a sacrificial victim, may they force everyone to join in?’
      • ‘The ritual slaughter is justified by the doctrine that the soul of the victim went straight to heaven.’
      • ‘The victim had been flogged with chains and stabbed with cut glass while tied to a black wooden table in the altar room of the church.’
      • ‘The captives were then used as sacrificial victims to the gods of the victor; one ritual feeding another.’
      • ‘Inside they discover a sacrificial chamber where the human victims look to have been consumed from inside.’
      • ‘Flower Wars were among the most important method of obtaining sacrificial victims.’
      • ‘Legend records that at the dedication of the former some 20000 human victims were sacrificed.’
      sacrifice, offering, burnt offering, scapegoat
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  • fall victim to

    • Be hurt, killed, damaged, or destroyed by.

      ‘he fell victim to a fatal blood infection’
      • ‘I am concerned that companies are falling victim to online commercial extortion and we are not being told.’
      • ‘Adverse effects of high consumption levels, however, lead to Irish people falling victim to more accidents and violence, new research shows.’
      • ‘A 16-year-old boy was left with a black eye and facial bruising after falling victim to what appears to have been the first reported incident of its kind in the borough.’
      • ‘A mother whose young daughter allegedly fell victim to the abuse condemned the BNP for turning her ordeal into a race issue.’
      • ‘If we adopt the stance that it's fine to disregard generalisations such as cultural relativism we may actually be falling victim to just such a thing.’
      • ‘If accuracy and nuance sometimes fall victim to all this rhetoric, well, there's a war on, folks.’
      fall ill with, be stricken with, become infected with, catch, develop, contract, pick up
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Late 15th century (denoting a creature killed as a religious sacrifice): from Latin victima.