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[vey-keyt or, esp. British, vuh-keyt, vey-] /ˈveɪ keɪt or, esp. British, vəˈkeɪt, veɪ-/
verb (used with object), vacated, vacating.
to give up possession or occupancy of:
to vacate an apartment.
to give up or relinquish (an office, position, etc.):
to vacate the presidency of a firm.
to render inoperative; deprive of validity; void; annul:
to vacate a legal judgment.
to cause to be empty or unoccupied; make vacant:
to vacate one's mind of worries.
verb (used without object), vacated, vacating.
to withdraw from occupancy; surrender possession:
We will have to vacate when our lease expires.
to give up or leave a position, office, etc.
to leave; go away.
Origin of vacate
1635-45; < Latin vacātus past participle of vacāre to be empty; see -ate1
Related forms
vacatable, adjective
prevacate, verb (used with object), prevacated, prevacating.
revacate, verb (used with object), revacated, revacating.
unvacated, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for vacating
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Was it intended that the Duquettes should recognize the desirability of vacating the farm?

    The Hunted Outlaw Anonymous
  • The Croatians are moving into houses which the Bohemians are vacating.

    New Homes for Old Sophonisba Preston Breckinridge
  • It was laughable to hear them twitting each other about vacating their quarters.

  • "Certainly," said Little Wolf, vacating her seat with infinite condescention.

    Little Wolf M. A. Cornelius
  • Then he wrote her a letter, offering her the choice of buying from him or vacating at once.

    Rolling Stones

    O. Henry
  • In vacating the hut, the last occupants had left some of the furnishings behind them.

    Gunman's Reckoning Max Brand
  • Mr. Terry insisted on vacating his seat in Mr. Bangs favour.

    Two Knapsacks

    John Campbell
  • And with this vacating of the breakfast-chamber we may as well close the chapter.

    King John of Jingalo Laurence Housman
British Dictionary definitions for vacating


verb (mainly transitive)
to cause (something) to be empty, esp by departing from or abandoning it: to vacate a room
(also intransitive) to give up the tenure, possession, or occupancy of (a place, post, etc); leave or quit
  1. to cancel or rescind
  2. to make void or of no effect; annul
Derived Forms
vacatable, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for vacating



1640s, "to make void, to annul," from Latin vacatum, past participle of vacare "to be empty" (see vain). Meaning "to leave, give up, quit" (a place) is attested from 1791. Related: Vacated; vacating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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