[ dih-sim-uh-leyt ]
/ dɪˈsɪm əˌleɪt /

verb (used with object), dis·sim·i·lat·ed, dis·sim·i·lat·ing. Phonetics.

to modify by dissimilation.

Origin of dissimilate

First recorded in 1835–45; dis-1 + (as)similate
Related formsdis·sim·i·la·tive, adjectivedis·sim·i·la·to·ry [dih-sim-uh-luh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /dɪˈsɪm ə ləˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for dissimilate


/ (dɪˈsɪmɪˌleɪt) /


to make or become dissimilar
(usually foll by to) phonetics to change or displace (a consonant) or (of a consonant) to be changed to or displaced by (another consonant) so that its manner of articulation becomes less similar to a speech sound in the same word. Thus (r) in the final syllable of French marbre is dissimilated to (l) in its English form marble
Derived Formsdissimilative, adjectivedissimilatory, adjective

Word Origin for dissimilate

C19: from dis- 1 + assimilate
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 dissimilate



"make different," 1821, from dis- + Latin similis on model of assimilate. Related: Dissimilated; dissimilating; dissimilation (1806).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper