AskDefine | Define vitiate

Dictionary Definition



1 corrupt morally or by intemperance or sensuality; "debauch the young people with wine and women"; "Socrates was accused of corrupting young men"; "Do school counselors subvert young children?"; "corrupt the morals" [syn: corrupt, pervert, subvert, demoralize, demoralise, debauch, debase, profane, deprave, misdirect]
2 make imperfect; "nothing marred her beauty" [syn: mar, impair, spoil, deflower]
3 take away the legal force of or render ineffective; "invalidateas a contract" [syn: invalidate, void] [ant: validate]

User Contributed Dictionary



From the past participle stem of Latin vitiare, from vitium ‘vice’.


  • /'vɪʃi:eɪt/


  1. to spoil, make faulty; to reduce the value, quality, or effectiveness of something
    • 1997: ‘Mr Rose,’ says the Physician, ‘this man was brought to us from Russia. Precisely such a case of vitiated judgment as I describe at length in my Treatise on Madness. Mayhap you have read it?’ — Andrew Miller, Ingenious Pain
  2. to debase or morally corrupt
  3. transitive archaic to violate, to rape
    • 1965: ‘Crush the cockatrice,’ he groaned, from his death-cell. ‘I am dead in law’ – but of the girl he denied that he had ‘attempted to vitiate her at Nine years old’; for ‘upon the word of a dying man, both her Eyes did see, and her Hands did act in all that was done’. — John Fowles, The Magus
  4. to make something ineffective, to invalidate

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

Privacy Policy, About Us, Terms and Conditions, Contact Us
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2
Material from Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Dict
Valid HTML 4.01 Strict, Valid CSS Level 2.1