from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. The killing of one's brother or sister.
  • n. One who has killed one's brother or sister.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The killing of one's brother (or sister).
  • n. A person who commits this crime.
  • n. The intentional or unintentional killing of a comrade in arms.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The act of one who murders or kills his own brother.
  • n. One who murders or kills his own brother.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. One who murders or kills a brother.
  • n. The act of murdering or killing a brother.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a person who murders their brother or sister
  • n. fire that injures or kills an ally
  • n. the murder of your sibling


Middle English, from Old French, from Latin frātricīdium and frātricīda : frāter, frātr-, brother; see bhrāter- in Indo-European roots + -cīdium and -cīda, -cide.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin frater ("brother") + caedere ("to kill"). (Wiktionary)


  • An investigation was immediately launched, and several documents show that the local chain of command was largely convinced it was fratricide from the beginning.

    May 2005

  • This caused the Venetian government to seize their treasure and to commission the statues as a cautionary, perpetual reminder that fratricide is considered very, very rude in that part of the world.

    The Shoe That Went Missing for 761 Years

  • Frank J. Sulloway in his Born to Rebel: Birth Order, Family Dynamics and Creative Lives (New York: Random House, 1996) gives a paragraph to the Díaz brothers (273) and throughout his book refers to fratricide and sibling rivalry.


  • The U.S. military refers to it as fratricide, which is the killing of a brother.

    CNN Transcript Mar 23, 2003

  • Tillman was on his second tour of duty when he was killed in Afghanistan -- a victim of "fratricide," inadvertently killed by his own troops during an ill-fated expedition.

    Rory O'Connor: The Tillman Story -- Just Give Us Some Truth

  • The poem proceeds to move fear away from political theology and ultimately toward a secular account of legitimate retributive justice — in which fear is invoked as a highly specific accompaniment to the notion of deserved punishment for the "fratricide" that

    Romantic Fear

  • In service as an Army Ranger, Tillman was shot by another American in what the military calls "fratricide," but what the rest of the nation knows as "friendly fire."

    Pat Tillman’s Unfinished Legacy - Swampland -

  • He also thought that the problem posed by "fratricide" would preclude a successful first strike.

    Things Found In The Wreckage Of Angel 1508

  • It would be a grave intellectual mistake, if you've read Genesis, to speak of fratricide as if it were invented by videogames.

    Not Child's Play

  • In Vietnam, friendly-fire casualties-or "fratricide," as the Pentagon calls them-skyrocketed to somewhere between 15 and 20 percent of all casualties.

    Don't Blame The Fighter Jocks


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  • Fater or Fatris refers to Brother in Latin and ' Cide' refers to killing.

    Fater+Cide = Fratricide = Killing one's own brother.

    October 22, 2013