verb (used with object), ac·cel·er·at·ed, ac·cel·er·at·ing.

to cause faster or greater activity, development, progress, advancement, etc., in: to accelerate economic growth.
to hasten the occurrence of: to accelerate the fall of a government.
Mechanics. to change the velocity of (a body) or the rate of (motion); cause to undergo acceleration.
to reduce the time required for (a course of study) by intensifying the work, eliminating detail, etc.

verb (used without object), ac·cel·er·at·ed, ac·cel·er·at·ing.

to move or go faster; increase in speed.
to progress or develop faster.

Origin of accelerate

1515–25; < Latin accelerātus speeded up (past participle of accelerāre), equivalent to ac- ac- + celer swift + -ātus -ate1
Related formsac·cel·er·a·ble, adjectiveac·cel·er·at·ed·ly, adverbo·ver·ac·cel·er·ate, verb, o·ver·ac·cel·er·at·ed, o·ver·ac·cel·er·at··ac·cel·er·ate, verb, re·ac·cel·er·at·ed, re·ac·cel·er·at·ing.self-ac·cel·erat·ing, adjectiveun·ac·cel·er·at·ed, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for accelerate

Contemporary Examples of accelerate

Historical Examples of accelerate

  • The narrowness serves to concentrate the strength and accelerate the work.

    Mountain Meditations

    L. Lind-af-Hageby

  • And he was stamping off to accelerate these preparations for departure, when her voice arrested him.

    Captain Blood

    Rafael Sabatini

  • To accelerate the introduction of the cargo, a grain-elevator was employed.

  • As soon as the copter grounded, he could accelerate and escape.

    Rebels of the Red Planet

    Charles Louis Fontenay

  • The small ships were not able to accelerate to the terrific speed needed.

    The Black Star Passes

    John W Campbell

British Dictionary definitions for accelerate



to go, occur, or cause to go or occur more quickly; speed up
(tr) to cause to happen sooner than expected
(tr) to increase the velocity of (a body, reaction, etc); cause acceleration
Derived Formsaccelerable, adjectiveaccelerative or acceleratory, adjective

Word Origin for accelerate

C16: from Latin accelerātus, from accelerāre to go faster, from ad- (intensive) + celerāre to hasten, from celer swift
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

Word Origin and History for accelerate

1520s, from Latin acceleratus, past participle of accelerare "to hasten, to quicken," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + celerare "hasten," from celer "swift" (see celerity). Related: Accelerated; accelerating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper