[ ik-skawr-ee-eyt, -skohr- ]
/ 瑟k藞sk蓴r i藢e瑟t, -藞sko蕣r- /
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verb (used with object), ex路co路ri路at路ed, ex路co路ri路at路ing.
to denounce or berate severely; flay verbally: He was excoriated for his mistakes.
to strip off or remove the skin from: Her palms were excoriated by the hard labor of shoveling.
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Origin of excoriate

Late Middle English, from Late Latin excori膩tus (past participle of excori膩re 鈥渢o strip, skin or bark鈥). See ex-1, corium, -ate1;def. 2 was first recorded in 1375鈥1425, and def. 1 was first recorded in 1880鈥85.


un路ex路co路ri路at路ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, 漏 Random House, Inc. 2023


What does聽excoriate mean?

Excoriate means to harshly scold, criticize, denounce, or express intense disapproval of someone or something.

Excoriating someone often involves the severest possible tone and words.

This sense of excoriate is based on its original, literal meaning: to strip off or remove the skin from an animal or person. The skin on your hands might be excoriated from hard yard work, for example.

The word flay can be used as a synonym for both the figurative and literal sense of excoriate.

In a medical context, excoriate means to scratch, scrape, or otherwise cause skin to be rubbed off or removed.

The act or an instance of excoriating is excoriation.

Example: She publicly excoriated her rival for his role in the scandal, criticizing him in the most extreme terms.

Where does聽excoriate come from?

The first records of excoriate come from around 1400. It comes from the Latin verb excori膩re, meaning 鈥渢o strip off skin or bark,鈥 from the Latin corium, meaning 鈥渟kin鈥 or 鈥渉ide.鈥 The prefix ex- means 鈥渨ithout,鈥 and the suffix -ate is used to form verbs. The figurative sense of excoriate didn鈥檛 enter widespread use until around the 1880s.

Today, when people use the word excoriate, they鈥檙e most likely talking about harshly scolding someone, and not about literally ripping someone鈥檚 skin off. But this is the underlying sense of its figurative use鈥攁 scolding so severe that it鈥檚 compared to getting your skin stripped off. There are many other words that mean about the same thing as excoriate, including flay, berate, castigate, chastise, and upbraid. Less formal synonyms include the terms rip into, tear into, and lay into.

Did you know ... ?

What are some other forms related to excoriate?

What are some synonyms for excoriate?

What are some words that share a root or word element with excoriate?聽



What are some words that often get used in discussing excoriate?


How is聽excoriate used in real life?

The figurative sense of excoriate is much more commonly used than its literal sense.



Try using聽excoriate!

Which of the following terms is NOT a synonym of excoriate?

A. tear into
B. berate
C. encourage
D. castigate

How to use excoriate in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for excoriate

/ (瑟k藞sk蓴藧r瑟藢e瑟t) /

verb (tr)
to strip (the skin) from (a person or animal); flay
med to lose (a superficial area of skin), as by scratching, the application of chemicals, etc
to denounce vehemently; censure severely

Derived forms of excoriate

excoriation, noun

Word Origin for excoriate

C15: from Late Latin excori膩re to strip, flay, from Latin corium skin, hide
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition 漏 William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 漏 HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012