- to make weak or feeble; enfeeble: The siege of pneumonia debilitated her completely.
Origin of debilitate
1525–35; < Latin dēbilitātus (past participle of dēbilitāre), equivalent to dēbilit-, stem of dēbilis weak + -ātus -ate1
SynonymsSee more synonyms for debilitate on Thesaurus.com
weaken, deplete, enervate, devitalize.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for debilitate
Infernal, it can cause fires and explosions; toxic, it can debilitate, poison, and kill.The Fiery Underground Oil Pit Eating L.A.
December 6, 2014
I will not debilitate the cook; I will not exhaust the fowl-yard.No Defense, Complete
He was one of those whom books cannot debilitate, nor a life of study incapacitate for the study of life.On the Sublime
Taking hot food or drink, habitually, tends to debilitate all the organs thus needlessly excited.
Many suppose that a warm bath exposes a person more readily to take cold; and that it tends to debilitate the system.
This is to prevent the free escape of water, which might debilitate the starch-making cells.Trees Worth Knowing
Julia Ellen Rogers
- (tr) to make feeble; weaken
C16: from Latin dēbilitāre, from dēbilis weak
Word Origin and History for debilitate
1530s, from Latin debilitatus, past participle of debilitare "to weaken," from debilis "weak" (see debility). Related: Debilitated; debilitating.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper