verb (used with object), im·mo·lat·ed, im·mo·lat·ing.

to sacrifice.
to kill as a sacrificial victim, as by fire; offer in sacrifice.
to destroy by fire.

Origin of immolate

1540–50; < Latin immolātus, past participle of immolāre to sprinkle with holy meal prior to sacrificing, sacrifice, equivalent to im- im-1 + mol(a) sacrificial barley cake, literally, millstone (see mill1) + -ātus -ate1
Related formsim·mo·la·tor, nounun·im·mo·lat·ed, adjective
Can be confusedemulate immolate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for immolate

suffer, surrender, yield, victimize

Examples from the Web for immolate

Contemporary Examples of immolate

Historical Examples of immolate

  • After sacrificing the greater animals, then we immolate the others.

  • They were about to immolate a turtle-dove, but the Princess saved its life, and let it fly.

  • Perhaps it was her destiny to immolate herself for duty to the end.

  • One among ms must immolate himself, study the malady, seek its cure.


    James Huneker

  • The heads which they have sworn to immolate must be obtained at any cost.

    The Human Race

    Louis Figuier

British Dictionary definitions for immolate


verb (tr)

to kill or offer as a sacrifice, esp by fire
literary to sacrifice (something highly valued)
Derived Formsimmolation, nounimmolator, noun

Word Origin for immolate

C16: from Latin immolāre to sprinkle an offering with sacrificial meal, sacrifice, from im- (in) + mola spelt grain; see mill 1
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 immolate

1540s, "to sacrifice, kill as a victim," from Latin immolatus, past participle of immolare "to sacrifice," originally "to sprinkle with sacrificial meal," from assimilated form of in- "into, in, on, upon" (see in- (2)) + mola (salsa) "(sacrificial) meal," related to molere "to grind" (see mallet). Related: Immolated; immolating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper