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See more synonyms for denationalize on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), de·na·tion·al·ized, de·na·tion·al·iz·ing.
  1. to remove (an industry or the like) from government ownership or control.
  2. to deprive of national status, attachments, or characteristics.
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Also especially British, de·na·tion·al·ise.

Origin of denationalize

First recorded in 1800–10; de- + nationalize
Related formsde·na·tion·al·i·za·tion, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for denationalize

Historical Examples

  • The Genoese had striven long and hard to denationalize the Corsican people by the introduction of foreign and hostile elements.

    Wanderings in Corsica, Vol. 1 of 2

    Ferdinand Gregorovius

  • He could not assent to the principle, that Congress had a right to denationalize the public funds.

  • His efforts to dazzle German princes and denationalize two of her leading thinkers were partly successful.

  • There is in every country a class who are prone to denationalize themselves; at this day, they generally ape the Frenchman.

    The Actress in High Life

    Sue Petigru Bowen

  • Alliance with the anti-slavery North would deprive a party of support South and denationalize it.

British Dictionary definitions for denationalize



  1. to return or transfer (an industry, etc) from public to private ownership
  2. to deprive (an individual, people, institution, etc) of national character or nationality
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Derived Formsdenationalization or denationalisation, 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 denationalize


1807, "to deprive of nationality," from French dénationaliser (said in contemporary English publications to have been coined by Napoleon Buonaparte; denapoleonize was coined shortly thereafter); see de- + nationalize. Meaning "to transfer from national to private ownership" recorded from 1921. Related: Denationalized; denationalization.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper