An assault is an attack. Getting punched, yelled at, or bombed are all types of assault.

To assault is to attack or bombard someone in some way. Fighter planes can make an aerial assault, while ground troops make a ground assault. Verbal assault consists of insults, swearing, or threats. A strong criticism, like a negative review in the newspaper, is a written assault. Physical assault can range from getting pushed to getting shot. You could even say "That music is so loud it's assaulting my ear drums!"

Definitions of assault

v attack someone physically or emotionally

“The mugger assaulted the woman”
assail, attack, set on
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attack with dogs or set dogs upon
set, sic
urge to attack someone
attack viciously and ferociously
attack suddenly
attack or hit on or from the side where the attacked person's view is obstructed
attack brutally and fiercely
assail again
make a sudden physical attack on
beset, set upon
assail or attack on all sides: "The zebra was beset by leopards"
desecrate, outrage, profane, violate
violate the sacred character of a place or language
harass or assault sexually; make indecent advances to
bear down, charge
to make a rush at or sudden attack upon, as in battle
rape (someone) successively with several attackers

v attack in speech or writing

assail, attack, lash out, round, snipe
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abuse, blackguard, clapperclaw, shout
use foul or abusive language towards
attack as if with claws
subject to bitter verbal abuse
criticize or abuse strongly and violently
attack forcefully
barrage, bombard
address with continuously or persistently, as if with a barrage
blister, scald, whip
subject to harsh criticism
attack strongly
abuse with coarse language
rail, revile, vilify, vituperate
spread negative information about
heap obscenities upon
Type of:
criticise, criticize, knock, pick apart
find fault with; express criticism of; point out real or perceived flaws

v force (someone) to have sex against their will

rape (someone) successively with several attackers
Type of:
assail, attack, set on
attack someone physically or emotionally

n a threatened or attempted physical attack by someone who appears to be able to cause bodily harm if not stopped

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aggravated assault
a reckless attack with intent to injure seriously (as with a deadly weapon)
assault and battery, battery
an assault in which the assailant makes physical contact
assault with intent to rob
resisting arrest
physical efforts to oppose a lawful arrest; the resistance is classified as assault and battery upon the person of the police officer attempting to make the arrest
Type of:
attack, attempt
the act of attacking

n close fighting during the culmination of a military attack

resisting arrest
physical efforts to oppose a lawful arrest; the resistance is classified as assault and battery upon the person of the police officer attempting to make the arrest
a direct and violent assault on a stronghold
Type of:
battle, conflict, engagement, fight
a hostile meeting of opposing military forces in the course of a war

n the crime of forcing a woman to submit to sexual intercourse against her will

date rape
rape in which the rapist is known to the victim (as when they are on a date together)
carnal abuse, statutory rape
sexual intercourse with a person (girl or boy) who has not reached the age of consent (even if both parties participate willingly)
Type of:
sex crime, sex offense, sexual abuse, sexual assault
a statutory offense that provides that it is a crime to knowingly cause another person to engage in an unwanted sexual act by force or threat

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