Definitions for: Tantalize


[v] harass with persistent criticism or carping; "The children teased the new teacher"; "Don't ride me so hard over my failure"; "His fellow workers razzed him when he wore a jacket and tie"



Webster (1913) Definition: 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.

Thy vain desires, at strife Within themselves, have
tantalized thy life. --Dryden.

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.

Synonyms: bait, cod, rag, rally, razz, ride, tantalise, taunt, tease, twit

See Also: banter, barrack, bemock, chaff, flout, gibe, jeer, jolly, josh, kid, mock, scoff

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