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verb (used with object), ex·hil·a·rat·ed, ex·hil·a·rat·ing.
  1. to enliven; invigorate; stimulate: The cold weather exhilarated the walkers.
  2. to make cheerful or merry.
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Origin of exhilarate

1530–40; < Latin exhilarātus past participle of exhilarāre to gladden, equivalent to ex- ex-1 + hilarāre to cheer (see hilarity); see -ate1
Related formsex·hil·a·rat·ing·ly, adverbex·hil·a·ra·tor, nounun·ex·hil·a·rat·ed, adjectiveun·ex·hil·a·rat·ing, adjective


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1, 2. depress.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

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British Dictionary definitions for exhilarate


  1. (tr) to make lively and cheerful; gladden; elate
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Derived Formsexhilaration, nounexhilarative or exhilaratory, adjective

Word Origin

C16: from Latin exhilarāre, from hilarāre to cheer; see hilarious
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 exhilarate


1530s, from Latin exhilaratus "cheerful, merry," past participle of exhilarare "gladden, cheer," from ex- "thoroughly" (see ex-) + hilarare "make cheerful," from hilarus "cheerful" (see hilarity). Related: Exhilarated; exhilarating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper