[ myoot-l-eyt ]
See synonyms for: mutilatemutilatedmutilation on

verb (used with object),mu·ti·lat·ed, mu·ti·lat·ing.
  1. to injure, disfigure, or make imperfect by removing or irreparably damaging parts: Vandals mutilated the painting.

  2. to deprive (a person or animal) of a limb or other essential part.

Origin of mutilate

1525–35; from Latin mutilātus (past participle of mutilāre “to cut off, maim”), equivalent to mutil(us) “maimed, mutilated” + -ātus-ate1

synonym study For mutilate

2. See maim.

Other words for mutilate

Other words from mutilate

  • mu·ti·la·tion, noun
  • mu·ti·la·tive, mu·ti·la·to·ry [myoot-l-uh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee], /ˈmyut l əˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/, adjective
  • mu·ti·la·tor, noun
  • self-mu·ti·lat·ing, adjective
  • self-mu·ti·la·tion, noun
  • un·mu·ti·lat·ed, adjective
  • un·mu·ti·la·tive, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use mutilate in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for mutilate


/ (ˈmjuːtɪˌleɪt) /

  1. to deprive of a limb, essential part, etc; maim; dismember

  2. to mar, expurgate, or damage (a text, book, etc)

Origin of mutilate

C16: from Latin mutilāre to cut off; related to mutilus maimed

Derived forms of mutilate

  • mutilation, noun
  • mutilative, adjective
  • mutilator, 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