To subdue is defined as to gain control over someone or something or to calm or quiet someone or something.
An example of subdue is when you manage to calm angry protestors and gain control over the situation.
- to bring into subjection; conquer; vanquish
- to overcome, as by persuasion or training; control
- to make less intense; reduce; diminish; soften; allay
- to repress (emotions, passions, etc.)
- to bring (land) under cultivation
Origin of subdueMiddle English subdewen (altered in sense and form by associated, association with Classical Latin subdere, to put under, subject) ; from Old French soduire, to withdraw, seduce ; from Classical Latin subducere: see subduce
transitive verbsub·dued, sub·du·ing, sub·dues
- To subjugate (a region or people, for example) by military force.
- a. To bring under control by physical force, persuasion, or other means; overcome: subdued the wild horse; subdued the rebellion in the party ranks.b. To make less intense or prominent; reduce or tone down: I was unable to subdue my excitement about the upcoming holiday.
- To bring (land) under cultivation: Farmers subdued the arid lands of Australia.
Origin of subdueMiddle English subduen, alteration (influenced by Latin subdere, to subject) of Old French suduire, to seduce, from Latin subd&umacron;cere, to withdraw (probably influenced by Latin s&emacron;d&umacron;cere, to seduce) : sub-, away; see sub– + d&umacron;cere, to lead; see deuk- in Indo-European roots.