obsess ob*sess", v. t. [L. obsessus, p. p. of obsidere to besiege; ob (see {Ob-}) + sedere to sit.] 1. To besiege; to beset. [archaic] --Sir T. Elyot. [1913 Webster]

2. To excessively preoccupy the thoughts or feelings of; to haunt the mind persistently. [PJC]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • obsess — ob*sess , v. i. To be excessively or persistently preoccupied with something; usually used with on or over; as, to obsess over an imagined insult. [PJC] At all ages children are driven to figure out what it takes to succeed among their peers and… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • obsess — has been used since the 16c as a transitive verb, often in the passive with obsessed as a quasi adjective: • Modern society is obsessed with romanticizing ancient societies Times, 1980. In the later part of the 20c a new intransitive use emerged …   Modern English usage

  • obsess — I verb agitate, annoy, bedevil, beset, besiege, bewitch, compel, control, craze, dement, derange, discompose, disconcert, distress, dominate, drive, enthrall, gnaw, haunt, hold captive, hound, infatuate, madden, nag, overpower, pervade, plague,… …   Law dictionary

  • obsess — (v.) c.1500, to besiege, from L. obsessus, pp. of obsidere besiege, occupy, lit. sit opposite to, from ob against (see OB (Cf. ob )) + sedere sit (see SEDENTARY (Cf. sedentary)). Of evil spirits, to haunt, from 1530s …   Etymology dictionary

  • obsess — [v] preoccupy beset, consume, dominate, engross, grip, harass, haunt, hold, infatuate, possess, torment; concept 403 …   New thesaurus

  • obsess — ► VERB 1) (usu. be obsessed) fill the mind of (someone) continually and disturbingly. 2) informal, chiefly N. Amer. be preoccupied in this way. ORIGIN originally in the sense «haunt, possess», referring to an evil spirit: from Latin obsidere… …   English terms dictionary

  • obsess — ☆ obsess [əb ses′] vt. [< L obsessus, pp. of obsidere, to besiege < ob (see OB ) + sedere,SIT] to haunt or trouble in mind, esp. to an abnormal degree; preoccupy greatly vi. to be obsessed or preoccupied: usually with about, over, or on …   English World dictionary

  • obsess — UK [əbˈses] / US verb Word forms obsess : present tense I/you/we/they obsess he/she/it obsesses present participle obsessing past tense obsessed past participle obsessed 1) [transitive] if someone or something obsesses you, they are so important… …   English dictionary

  • obsess — [[t]əbse̱s[/t]] obsesses, obsessing, obsessed V ERG If something obsesses you or if you obsess about something, you keep thinking about it and find it difficult to think about anything else. [V n] I must admit that maps obsess me... [V n] A… …   English dictionary

  • obsess — verb 1 (transitive usually passive) if something or someone obsesses you, you think about them all the time and you cannot think of anything else: be obsessed with: You ve always been obsessed with making money. | He had become obsessed with… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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