Tantalize
Tantalize Tan"ta*lize, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Tantalized}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Tantalizing}.] [From {Tantalus}: cf. F. tantaliser.] To tease or torment by presenting some good to the view and exciting desire, but continually frustrating the expectations by keeping that good out of reach; to tease; to torment. [1913 Webster]

Thy vain desires, at strife Within themselves, have tantalized thy life. --Dryden. [1913 Webster]

Syn: To tease; vex; irritate; provoke.

Usage: {Tantalize}, {Disappoint}. To disappoint is literally to do away with what was (or was taken to be) appointed; hence the peculiar pain from hopes thus dashed to the ground. To tantalize, a much stronger term, describes a most distressing form of disappointment, as in the case of Tantalus, the Phrygian king. To tantalize is to visit with the bitterest disappointment -- to torment by exciting hopes or expectations which can never be realized. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Synonyms:
(by exciting hopes and refusing to gratify them), , , , , , ,


Look at other dictionaries:

  • tantalize — index bait (lure), interest, lure Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • tantalize — (v.) 1590s, from L. TANTALUS (Cf. Tantalus), from Gk. Tantalos, king of Phrygia, son of Zeus, punished in the afterlife (for an offense variously given) by being made to stand in a river up to his chin, under branches laden with fruit, all of… …   Etymology dictionary

  • tantalize — (Amer.) tan·ta·lize || tæntÉ™laɪz v. tease, provoke or tease by presenting something as available and then withholding it; expose someone to something inaccessible; annoy; criticize (also tantalise) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • tantalize — tease, harass, harry, *worry, annoy, plague, pester Analogous words: vex, *annoy, irk, bother: torment, torture, try, *afflict: *bait, badger Antonyms: satisfy …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • tantalize — means more than just ‘tease or torment’, as is shown by the word s origins in the treatment meted out to the legendary Phrygian king Tantalus, who was forced to stand in water which receded when he tried to drink and under branches that drew back …   Modern English usage

  • tantalize — [v] provoke, tease annoy, badger, baffle, bait, bedevil, beleaguer, charm, entice, fascinate, frustrate, gnaw, harass, harry, keep hanging*, lead on, make mouth water*, pester, plague, taunt, thwart, titillate, torment, torture, worry; concepts 7 …   New thesaurus

  • tantalize — (also tantalise) ► VERB ▪ torment or tease with the sight or promise of something that is unobtainable or withheld. DERIVATIVES tantalization noun tantalizing adjective. ORIGIN from Tantalus in Greek mythology, who was punished for his crimes by… …   English terms dictionary

  • tantalize — [tan′tə līz΄] vt. tantalized, tantalizing [< TANTALUS + IZE] to tease or disappoint by promising or showing something desirable and then withholding it tantalization n. tantalizer n …   English World dictionary

  • tantalize — UK [ˈtæntəlaɪz] / US [ˈtænt(ə)lˌaɪz] verb [transitive] Word forms tantalize : present tense I/you/we/they tantalize he/she/it tantalizes present participle tantalizing past tense tantalized past participle tantalized to make someone feel excited… …   English dictionary

  • tantalize — See tantalize, harass …   Dictionary of problem words and expressions

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