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[vish-ee-eyt] /ˈvɪʃ iˌeɪt/
verb (used with object), vitiated, vitiating.
to impair the quality of; make faulty; spoil.
to impair or weaken the effectiveness of.
to debase; corrupt; pervert.
to make legally defective or invalid; invalidate:
to vitiate a claim.
Origin of vitiate
1525-35; < Latin vitiātus, past participle of vitiāre to spoil, derivative of vitium blemish, vice1 + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
vitiation, noun
vitiator, noun
nonvitiation, noun
unvitiated, adjective
unvitiating, adjective
Can be confused
ameliorate, obviate, vitiate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for vitiation
Historical Examples
  • The phenomena of puerperal fever originate in a vitiation of the fluids.

    A System of Midwifery

    Edward Rigby
  • There is the inefficiency of the syllogism, and also the vitiation produced by its employment.

    A Logic Of Facts George Jacob Holyoake
  • From remote ages it had been numbered among the elements, though considered liable to vitiation or foulness.

  • To correct this vitiation, to abolish these disastrous hates and misconceptions, elaborate learning was not needed.

    The Fruits of Victory Norman Angell
  • When the atmosphere is vitiated, the oxygenating processes are diminished in ratio to the vitiation.

    Martyria Augustus C. Hamlin
  • He had a contempt for cheap and plain belongings, as leaning insensibly to vitiation of taste.

    Hope Mills Amanda M. Douglas
  • If this be true of news and of its vitiation through the Press, it is still truer of opinions and suggested ideas.

    The Free Press

    Hilaire Belloc
  • But here again enter error of perspective, and vitiation due to the bias of love.

    The Iron Heel Jack London
  • In Everope is seen the extremity to which the vitiation here mentioned by the great moralist may sometimes be carried.

    Trevethlan (Vol 3 of 3) William Davy Watson
British Dictionary definitions for vitiation


verb (transitive)
to make faulty or imperfect
to debase, pervert, or corrupt
to destroy the force or legal effect of (a deed, etc): to vitiate a contract
Derived Forms
vitiable, adjective
vitiation, noun
vitiator, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin vitiāre to injure, from vitium a fault
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 vitiation



1530s, from Latin vitiatus, past participle of vitiare "to make faulty, injure, spoil, corrupt," from vitium "fault, defect, blemish, crime, vice" (see vice (n.1)). Related: Vitiated; vitiating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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vitiation in Medicine

vitiation vi·ti·a·tion (vĭsh'ē-ā'shən)
A change in a process that impairs utility or reduces efficiency.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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