1 expression of intention to do harm/punish
ADJ. dire, terrible Despite dire threats of violence from extremist groups, the protest passed off peacefully. | empty, idle The kids took no notice of the teacher's idle threats. | implied, veiled The company's pay offer was accompanied by thinly-veiled threats of redundancies if it was rejected. | explicit | physical, violent | verbal | bomb, death, suicide
VERB + THREAT issue, make, utter | receive | carry out It's unwise to make threats that you cannot carry out. | lift, withdraw Teachers have lifted their threat of strike action. | reduce | give in to The government refused to give in to the hijackers' threats.
PREP. ~ against The accused made death threats against a notable politician.
2 possible danger
ADJ. big, considerable, dangerous, deadly, grave, great, major, real, serious, significant | main | growing, increasing | constant, continual, continuous, ever-present, permanent | renewed The national park is under renewed threat from road-building schemes. | direct, immediate, imminent The opposition presents no immediate threat to the government. | insidious | long-term, short-term | potential | apparent, perceived | external The government was faced with internal rebellion as well as external threats. | physical | political | environmental | military, nuclear, terrorist
VERB + THREAT be, pose, present, represent the environmental threat posed by oil spillages | consider sth (as), perceive sth as, regard sth as, see sth as, view sth as Translators do not yet perceive computers as a threat to their livelihood. | face, meet
PREP. under ~ Many wild plants are under threat of extinction. | ~ from the threat from overfishing | ~ of a threat of violence | ~ to The junta reacted violently to the perceived threat to its authority.