book

 

Learn English  
 

Blue Level

 
 

Red Level

 
 

Yellow Level

 
 

Green Level

 
 

Purple Level

 
 

Orange Level

 
 

Violet Level

 
 

Video Lessons

 
 

Links

 
 

American Speech

 
 

Chat

 
 

How to Learn

 
 

Vocabulary

 
 

U.S. Citizenship

 
 

Reading

 

 

 

 


 


bully

 

We use the word "bully" to describe a person who hurts or harasses another person for pleasure. (or the person is just naturally mean.) A bully can be a child or an adult. Lately a lot of attention has been focused on bullying in American schools, but it can happen among adults in offices or neighborhoods. It's a good word to learn about.

bully Reggie is a bully.

These sentences show how "bully" is used as a noun:

  • Everyone knows that Reggie is a bully.
  • Martha teases the people she works with in a very mean way. She's nothing but a bully.
  • Some bullies at a local school made a girl so unhappy that she hanged herself.
  • Steve's experiences as a child made him into a bully, and he knows it; however, he still goes out of his way to make others uncomfortable.
  • Many Americans think Donald Trump is a bully.

You can use "bully" as a verb:

  • Mike bullied a boy into giving up his lunch money.
  • I know a teenage girl who was bullied so much at school that she often stayed home. (This sentence uses the passive voice.)
  • My wife's boss bullies his employees into working extra hours and on the weekends.
  • No one likes the way the police bullied the protestors with mace.

These sentences show how "bully" is used in the form of a gerund:

  • Bullying is a problem in some schools.
  • Parents were upset to learn that a situation involving bullying wasn't addressed.
  • If you are a victim of bullying, you should seek help.

Click here to go to the Word of the Day page.

 

This page was first published on May 8, 2012. It was updated on February 2, 2016.

 

 

 

 

 

 

© 2017 Learn American English Online. All rights reserved.