harrow

To harrow is to cause worry and upset, the way a truly scary movie might harrow you, making it hard to sleep without turning on the light.

Harrow is an uncommon verb that was originally used in a religious context. You're much more likely to hear the adjective harrowing used for things that are extremely distressing. But if your cat torments you nightly with her incessant meowing, you might try yelling, "Why do you harrow me?" In agriculture, harrow has a completely different meaning: it's a device that helps up break up the soil. And if you harrow your land, you use such a device.

Definitions of harrow
  1. noun
    a cultivator that pulverizes or smooths the soil
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    types:
    disc harrow, disk harrow
    a harrow with a series of disks set on edge at an angle
    type of:
    cultivator, tiller
    a farm implement used to break up the surface of the soil (for aeration and weed control and conservation of moisture)
  2. verb
    draw a harrow over (land)
    synonyms: disk
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    type of:
    plough, plow, turn
    to break and turn over earth especially with a plow
  3. verb
    cause to feel distress
    synonyms: aggrieve, grieve
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    type of:
    afflict
    cause great unhappiness for; distress
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