Definition of threat noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//θret//
    ; NAmE NAmE//θret//
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  1. 1  [countable, uncountable] threat (to do something) a statement in which you tell somebody that you will punish or harm them, especially if they do not do what you want to make threats against somebody She is prepared to carry out her threat to resign. He received death threats from right-wing groups. crimes involving violence or the threat of violence
  2. 2  [uncountable, countable, usually singular] the possibility of trouble, danger or disaster These ancient woodlands are under threat from new road developments. There is a real threat of war. The forecast is for rain with the threat of thunderstorms.
  3. 3  [countable, usually singular] threat (to something) a person or thing that is likely to cause trouble, danger, etc. He is unlikely to be a threat to the Spanish player in the final. Drugs pose a major threat to our society.
  4. Word OriginOld English thrēat ‘oppression’, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch verdrieten ‘grieve’, German verdriessen ‘irritate’.Extra examples It’s unwise to make threats that you cannot carry out. Many wild plants are under threat of extinction. Teachers have lifted their threat of strike action. The accused made death threats against a notable politician. The company’s pay offer was accompanied by thinly veiled threats if it was rejected. The government refused to give in to the hijackers’ threats. The government was faced with internal rebellion as well as external threats. The junta reacted violently to the perceived threat to its authority. The kids took no notice of the teacher’s idle threats. The national park is under renewed threat from road-building schemes. The opposition presents no immediate threat to the government. Translators do not yet perceive computers as a threat to their livelihood. a threat of violence the environmental threat posed by oil spillages the threat from overfishing Drug abuse poses a major threat to the fabric of our society. He could be a real threat to the Spanish player in the final. He is unlikely to be a threat to the public and should be released immediately.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: threat

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