• synonyms


verb (used with object), li·gat·ed, li·gat·ing.
  1. to bind with or as if with a ligature; tie up (a bleeding artery or the like).
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Origin of ligate

1590–1600; < Latin ligātus (past participle of ligāre to tie, bind); see -ate1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for ligate

Historical Examples of ligate

  • I know there are professors in this country who "ligate" arteries.

    Medical Essays

    Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

  • Medical authorities tell him to do coeliotomy at once, ligate the uterine and ovarian arteries, and remove the foetus.

  • If the bleeding cannot otherwise be arrested it may be necessary to ligate the external carotid artery.

  • If profuse hæmorrhage occurs it may be necessary to ligate the main artery lower in the neck.

British Dictionary definitions for ligate


  1. (tr) to tie up or constrict (something) with a ligature
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Derived Formsligation, nounligative (ˈlɪɡətɪv), adjective

Word Origin for ligate

C16: from Latin ligātus, from ligāre to bind
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 ligate


1590s, from Latin ligatus, past participle of ligare "to bind" (see ligament). Related: Ligated; ligating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

ligate in Medicine


  1. To tie or bind with a ligature.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.