v. con·vulsed, con·vuls·ing, con·vuls·es
1. To shake or agitate violently: tremors that convulsed the countryside. See Synonyms at agitate.
2. To disturb or upset severely: Strikes and riots convulsed the nation.
3. To affect with irregular and involuntary muscular contractions; throw into convulsions.
4. To cause to shake with laughter or strong emotion.
1. To become affected by convulsions; shake.
2. To be disturbed or upset: The region convulses with change.
[Latin convellere, convuls-, to pull violently : com-, intensive pref.; see COM- + vellere, to pull.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
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