- To quell is to stop or quiet something.
An example of quell is to soothe someone’s anger.
- to crush; subdue; put an end to
- to quiet; allay
Origin of quellMiddle English quellen ; from Old English cwellan, to kill, akin to qwalu, death, German quälen, torment, afflict ; from Indo-European base an unverified form gwel-, to stab, pain, death from source Old Irish at-baill, (he) dies
transitive verbquelled, quell·ing, quells
- To put down forcibly; suppress: Police quelled the riot.
- To pacify; quiet: finally quelled the children's fears.
Origin of quellMiddle English quellen, to kill, from Old English cwellan; see gwel&schwa;- in Indo-European roots.
(third-person singular simple present quells, present participle quelling, simple past and past participle quelled)
Old English cwellan (“to kill”). Compare Old Armenian կեղ (keł, “sore, ulcer”), Old Church Slavonic жаль (žalĭ, “pain”), German quälen (“to torment, agonize, smite”).