admonish

To admonish is to scold. If you want to show someone you're not happy with his behavior, admonish him.

Coming to English through Old French from the Latin admonere "to advise, remind," admonish is always used with an eye on improving someone's behavior. The exact meaning of this formal verb varies in intensity depending generally on who is being corrected. If a child or subordinate is being admonished, it means "scold" or "rebuke" whereas if someone admonishes a person with equal standing, warn or advise are closer synonyms.

Definitions of admonish
  1. verb
    take to task
    “He admonished the child for his bad behavior”
    synonyms: reprove
    see moresee less
    type of:
    criticise, criticize, knock, pick apart
    find fault with; express criticism of; point out real or perceived flaws
  2. verb
    admonish or counsel in terms of someone's behavior
    synonyms: discourage, monish, warn
    warn
    notify of danger, potential harm, or risk
    see moresee less
    type of:
    advise, counsel, rede
    give advice to
  3. verb
    warn strongly; put on guard
    synonyms: caution, monish
    see moresee less
    type of:
    warn
    notify of danger, potential harm, or risk
Word Family
EDITOR’S CHOICE

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.

SAT/PSAT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

TOEFL

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

ACT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 700+
  • Duration: 10 weeks
  • Time: 1 hour / week