complicate

[verb kom-pli-keyt; adjective kom-pli-kit]
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verb (used with object), com·pli·cat·ed, com·pli·cat·ing.
  1. to make complex, intricate, involved, or difficult: His recovery from the operation was complicated by an allergic reaction.
adjective
  1. complex; involved.
  2. Entomology. folded longitudinally one or more times, as the wings of certain insects.

Origin of complicate

1615–25; < Latin complicātus (past participle of complicāre to fold together), equivalent to com- com- + -plic- (combining form of *plecāre to fold, akin to plectī to plait; see complex) + -ātus -ate1
Related formso·ver·com·pli·cate, verb (used with object), o·ver·com·pli·cat·ed, o·ver·com·pli·cat·ing.pre·com·pli·cate, verb (used with object), pre·com·pli·cat·ed, pre·com·pli·cat·ing.re·com·pli·cate, verb (used with object), re·com·pli·cat·ed, re·com·pli·cat·ing.un·com·pli·cate, verb (used with object), un·com·pli·cat·ed, un·com·pli·cat·ing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018


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British Dictionary definitions for complicate

complicate

verb (ˈkɒmplɪˌkeɪt)
  1. to make or become complex
adjective (ˈkɒmplɪkɪt)
  1. biology folded on itselfa complicate leaf
  2. a less common word for complicated

Word Origin for complicate

C17: from Latin complicāre to fold together, from plicāre to fold
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 complicate
v.

1620s, "to intertwine" (as a past participle adjective, early 15c.), from Latin complicatus "folded together; confused, intricate," past participle of complicare (see complication). Meaning "to make more complex" is recorded from 1832, from earlier sense "to combine in a complex way" (17c.). Related: Complicated; complicating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper