Petrify Pet"ri*fy, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Petrified}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Petrifying}.] [L. petra rock, Gr. ? (akin to ? a stone) + -fy: cf. F. p['e]trifier. Cf. {Parrot}, {Petrel}, {Pier}.] 1. To convert, as any animal or vegetable matter, into stone or stony substance. [1913 Webster]

A river that petrifies any sort of wood or leaves. --Kirwan. [1913 Webster]

2. To make callous or obdurate; to stupefy; to paralyze; to transform; as by petrifaction; as, to petrify the heart. Young. ``Petrifying accuracy.'' --Sir W. Scott. [1913 Webster]

And petrify a genius to a dunce. --Pope. [1913 Webster]

The poor, petrified journeyman, quite unconscious of what he was doing. --De Quincey. [1913 Webster]

A hideous fatalism, which ought, logically, to petrify your volition. --G. Eliot. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • petrifying — adjective Causing immense fear; immobilising with fright; scary; frightening; terrifying The idea of speaking in front of such a large audience was petrifying …   Wiktionary

  • petrifying — Synonyms and related words: bloodcurdling, hair raising, hardening, indurative, paralyzing, petrifactive, stunning, stupefying, terrifying, terror, terror bearing, terror breathing, terror breeding, terror bringing, terror fraught, terror giving …   Moby Thesaurus

  • petrifying — adj. fossilizing, making into stone; paralyzing; terrifying, frightening pet·ri·fy || petrɪfaɪ v. make into stone; turn into stone; stiffen, make hard; paralyze with fear …   English contemporary dictionary

  • petrifying — See: petrify …   English dictionary

  • petrifying — adjective paralyzing with terror • Similar to: ↑alarming …   Useful english dictionary

  • Petrifying well — A petrifying well is a well with the mythical ability to turn everyday objects into stone. This process is actually caused by the high mineral content in the water which covers the objects, and causes them to appear petrified.Notable petrifying… …   Wikipedia

  • petrifying liquid — /pɛtrəfaɪɪŋ ˈlɪkwəd/ (say petruhfuying likwuhd) noun a sealing coat applied to a porous surface before applying an oil bound water paint, usually consisting of an emulsion of drying oil and/or resin in water …   Australian English dictionary

  • Timeline of paleontology — Timeline of paleontology* 1027 The Persian naturalist, Avicenna, explains how the stoniness of fossils is caused in The Book of Healing , proposing the theory of petrifying fluids ( succus lapidificatus ).citation|title=The Meaning of Fossils:… …   Wikipedia

  • petrify — [[t]pe̱trɪfaɪ[/t]] petrifies, petrifying, petrified 1) VERB If something petrifies you, it makes you feel very frightened. [V n] Prison petrifies me and I don t want to go there. Syn: terrify Derived words: petrifying ADJ …   English dictionary

  • Petrified — Petrify Pet ri*fy, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Petrified}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Petrifying}.] [L. petra rock, Gr. ? (akin to ? a stone) + fy: cf. F. p[ e]trifier. Cf. {Parrot}, {Petrel}, {Pier}.] 1. To convert, as any animal or vegetable matter, into stone… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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