You searched for: “assail
assail (verb), assails; assailed; assailing
1. To storm upon vigorously or violently: The troops are assailing the terrorists again.

It is difficult to believe that Mike could be assailed by so many bad things; he lost his job, his wife became very ill, and the roof of his house was damaged by a storm that caused severe leaks when it started to rain.

2. To attack with arguments, criticism, ridicule and to abuse: As a politician, Thomas was always ready to assail his opponents with slander.
3. To undertake a task with the purpose of mastering it: Joanne assailed her university studies with new determination.
4. To impinge upon; to make an impact on; to beset: The minds of members of the audience were assailed by all of the conflicting arguments presented by the speakers.
To violently attack with repeated words, criticisms, or blows.
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This entry is located in the following unit: sali-, salt-, -sili-, sult-, -salta- (page 1)
assassinate, assail, assault, assault
assassinate (uh SAS uh nayt") (verb)
To murder (a prominent person) by the means of a surprise ambush, often for political reasons: Someone did indeed assassinate President John F. Kennedy in Dallas, Texas, in 1963.
assail (uh SAYL) (verb)
To strike with or as if with violent blows: A mugger tried to assail James on the dark street as he was walking home.
assault (uh SALT) (noun)
A violent verbal attack with criticism: Paul was heard verbally making an assault at one of his coworkers.
assault (uh SALT) (verb)
To attack with or as if with violent blows: Stacy was wanted by the police because she assaulted a man with her umbrella.

It seems to be a bit unfair that the newspapers referred to the attempted shooting of a famous man as an attempt to assassinate him. Ordinary people have to be satisfied with being subject to an assault by someone attempting to assail them.

Word Entries at Get Words: “assail
To attack vigorously or violently with arguments, criticism, ridicule, etc. (1)