verb (used with object), de·col·o·nized, de·col·o·niz·ing.

to release from the status of a colony.
to allow (a colony) to become self-governing or independent.

verb (used without object), de·col·o·nized, de·col·o·niz·ing.

to free a colony to become self-governing or independent.

Also especially British, de·col·o·nise.

Origin of decolonize

Related formsde·col·o·ni·za·tion, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for decolonize

Contemporary Examples of decolonize

  • Pakistan, born in the scrabble to decolonize after World War II, has suffered from endless American and British meddling.

    The Daily Beast logo
    Sixty Years of Meddling and Bad Blood

    Alex Von Tunzelmann

    December 4, 2008

British Dictionary definitions for decolonize




(tr) to grant independence to (a colony)
Derived Formsdecolonization or decolonisation, 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