From Middle English harien, herien, from Old English herġian (“to pillage, plunder”), from Proto-Germanic *harjōną (compare East Frisian ferheerje, German verheeren (“to harry, devastate”), Swedish härja (“ravage, harry”)), from Proto-Germanic *harjaz (“army”) (compare Old English here, West Frisian hear, Dutch heer, German Heer), from Proto-Indo-European *kori̯os (compare Middle Irish cuire (“army”), Lithuanian kãrias (“army; war”), Old Church Slavonic кара (kara, “strife”), Ancient Greek κοίρανος (koíranos, “chief, commander”), Old Persian kāra ‘army’).[Cuneiform?]. More at here (army).
- (transitive) To bother; to trouble.
- We shall harry the enemy at every turn until his morale breaks and he is at our mercy.
2014 July 5, Sam Borden, “For bellicose Brazil, payback carries heavy price: Loss of Neymar [International New York Times version: Brazil and referee share some blame for Neymar's injury: Spaniard's failure to curb early pattern of fouls is seen as major factor (7 July 2014, p. 13)]”, The New York Times:
- The Colombians' ire was raised even more 10 minutes later when the referee showed a yellow card to [James] Rodríguez – who was apoplectic at the decision – for an innocuous trip that was, as Rodríguez vociferously pointed out with multiple hand gestures, a first offense compared with Fernandinho's harrying.
- (Can we find and add a quotation of Shakespeare to this entry?)
- To strip; to lay waste.
- The Northmen came several times and harried the land.
- Washington Irving
- to harry this beautiful region
- J. Burroughs
- A red squirrel had harried the nest of a wood thrush.