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assimilate

[verb uh-sim-uh-leyt; noun uh-sim-uh-lit, -leyt]
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verb (used with object), as·sim·i·lat·ed, as·sim·i·lat·ing.
  1. to take in and incorporate as one's own; absorb: He assimilated many new experiences on his European trip.
  2. to bring into conformity with the customs, attitudes, etc., of a group, nation, or the like; adapt or adjust: to assimilate the new immigrants.
  3. Physiology. to convert (food) to substances suitable for incorporation into the body and its tissues.
  4. to cause to resemble (usually followed by to or with).
  5. to compare; liken (usually followed by to or with).
  6. Phonetics. to modify by assimilation.
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verb (used without object), as·sim·i·lat·ed, as·sim·i·lat·ing.
  1. to be or become absorbed.
  2. to conform or adjust to the customs, attitudes, etc., of a group, nation, or the like: The new arrivals assimilated easily and quickly.
  3. Physiology. (of food) to be converted into the substance of the body; be absorbed into the system.
  4. to bear a resemblance (usually followed by to or with).
  5. Phonetics. to become modified by assimilation.
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noun
  1. something that is assimilated.
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Origin of assimilate

1570–80; < Latin assimilātus likened to, made like (past participle of assimilāre), equivalent to as- as- + simil- (see similar) + -ātus -ate1
Related formsas·sim·i·la·tor, nounnon·as·sim·i·lat·ing, adjectivere·as·sim·i·late, verb, re·as·sim·i·lat·ed, re·as·sim·i·lat·ing.un·as·sim·i·lat·ed, adjectiveun·as·sim·i·lat·ing, adjectivewell-as·sim·i·lat·ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for assimilate

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He gives what His hearers might be assumed to be able to assimilate; but that is all.

  • What sense would there be in attempting to assimilate our several needs?

    Freeland

    Theodor Hertzka

  • He thought for himself, and yet he could assimilate the ideas of other men.

  • Again there was an electric silence, and Beardsley let it assimilate.

  • There was more to be got if we had the wit to assimilate it.


British Dictionary definitions for assimilate

assimilate

verb
  1. (tr) to learn (information, a procedure, etc) and understand it thoroughly
  2. (tr) to absorb (food) and incorporate it into the body tissues
  3. (intr) to become absorbed, incorporated, or learned and understood
  4. (usually foll by into or with) to bring or come into harmony; adjust or become adjustedthe new immigrants assimilated easily
  5. (usually foll by to or with) to become or cause to become similar
  6. (usually foll by to) phonetics to change (a consonant) or (of a consonant) to be changed into another under the influence of one adjacent to it(n) often assimilates to ŋ before (k), as in ``include''
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Derived Formsassimilable, adjectiveassimilably, adverbassimilation, nounassimilative or assimilatory, adjectiveassimilator, nounassimilatively, adverb

Word Origin

C15: from Latin assimilāre to make one thing like another, from similis like, similar
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 assimilate

v.

early 15c., from Latin assimilatus "feigned, pretended, fictitious," past participle of assimilare "to make like," from ad- "to" (see ad-) + simulare "make similar," from similis "like, resembling" (see similar). Originally transitive (with to); intransitive use first recorded 1837. Related: Assimilated; assimilating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

assimilate in Medicine

assimilate

(ə-sĭmə-lāt′)
v.
  1. To consume and incorporate nutrients into the body after digestion.
  2. To transform food into living tissue by the process of anabolism.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.