V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary



Definition: 1. to hold back as an act of constraint; 2. to force out of one's consciousness; 3. to put down by force before control has been lost, as with a rebellion

Synonyms: restrain, suppress, check, inhibit, curb, cork, quell

Antonyms: allow, approve, permit

Tips: Repress denotes the "pressing back" of emotions or actions. It is about controlling, suppressing, or hiding something entirely, as a conscious choice. Within politics or rebellions, those in charge can repress (push down) an uprising. Psychologically speaking, it is common to repress painful or disturbing memories, or push them below the surface. Repress can be used to talk about outbursts like tears and laughter, though it's probably better to use "suppress" in these cases.

Usage Examples:

My sense of humor often gets the best of me, and I must repress the urge to laugh. (restrain, quell)

The crowd is getting restless and angry; they must be repressed. (restrained, suppressed) adjective

She had repressed her grief for so long, it finally manifested into a serious depression. (suppressed, inhibited)

I repressed my tears throughout the whole movie, but the ending scene finally got me, and I cried like a baby. (quelled, checked, held back)

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