• synonyms


verb (used with object), ex·ter·nal·ized, ex·ter·nal·iz·ing.
  1. to make external; embody in an outward form.
  2. to regard as consisting of externals.
  3. to regard or treat as being caused by externals; attribute to external causes: to externalize one's difficulties.
  4. to direct (the personality) outward in social relationships.
Show More
Also especially British, ex·ter·nal·ise.

Origin of externalize

First recorded in 1850–55; external + -ize
Related formsnon·ex·ter·nal·ized, adjectivesem·i·ex·ter·nal·ized, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for externalise

Historical Examples of externalise

  • The tendency of legalism to externalise life has another aspect.

    What Is and What Might Be

    Edmond Holmes

  • It is through this law that we externalise and become in body what we live in our minds.

British Dictionary definitions for externalise


exteriorize (ɪkˈstɪərɪəˌraɪz), externalise or exteriorise

verb (tr)
  1. to make external; give outward shape to
  2. psychol to attribute (one's own feelings) to one's surroundings
Show More
Derived Formsexternalization, exteriorization, externalisation or exteriorisation, 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 externalise



1852, from external + -ize. Related: Externalized; externalizing.

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper