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[ig-zoom, -zyoom, eks-hyoom]
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verb (used with object), ex·humed, ex·hum·ing.
  1. to dig (something buried, especially a dead body) out of the earth; disinter.
  2. to revive or restore after neglect or a period of forgetting; bring to light: to exhume a literary reputation; to exhume old letters.
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Origin of exhume

1400–50; late Middle English < Medieval Latin exhumāre, equivalent to Latin ex- ex-1 + humāre to inter
Related formsex·hu·ma·tion [eks-hyoo-mey-shuh n] /ˌɛks hyʊˈmeɪ ʃən/, nounex·hum·er, nounun·ex·humed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

unearth, disclose, resurrect, reveal, disinter, disentomb, disinhume

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British Dictionary definitions for exhume


verb (tr)
  1. to dig up (something buried, esp a corpse); disinter
  2. to reveal; disclose; unearthdon't exhume that old argument
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Derived Formsexhumation (ˌɛkshjʊˈmeɪʃən), nounexhumer, noun

Word Origin

C18: from Medieval Latin exhumāre, from Latin ex- 1 + humāre to bury, from humus the ground
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 exhume


early 15c., from Medieval Latin exhumare "to unearth" (13c.), from Latin ex- "out of" (see ex-) + humare "bury," from humus "earth" (see chthonic). An alternative form was exhumate (1540s), taken directly from Medieval Latin. Related: Exhumed; exhuming.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper