• synonyms


[kuh m-pahrt-men-tl-ahyz, kom-pahrt-]
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verb (used with object), com·part·men·tal·ized, com·part·men·tal·iz·ing.
  1. to divide into categories or compartments.
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Also especially British, com·part·men·tal·ise.

Origin of compartmentalize

First recorded in 1920–25; compartmental + -ize
Related formscom·part·men·tal·i·za·tion, nounde·com·part·men·tal·i·za·tion, nounde·com·part·men·tal·ize, verb (used with object), de·com·part·men·tal·ized, de·com·part·men·tal·iz·ing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for compartmentalize

insulate, sort, interval, group, space, seclude, island, distribute, winnow, sequester, assign, sift, comb, discriminate, compartment, intervene, order, classify, compartmentalize

Examples from the Web for compartmentalize

Contemporary Examples of compartmentalize

British Dictionary definitions for compartmentalize



  1. (usually tr) to put or divide into (compartments, categories, etc), esp to an excessive degree
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Derived Formscompartmentalization or compartmentalisation, noun
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 compartmentalize


1918, from compartmental + -ize. Related: Compartmentalized; compartmentalizing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper