[ in-tl-ek-choo-uh-lahyz ]
/ ˌɪn tlˈɛk tʃu əˌlaɪz /

verb (used with object), in·tel·lec·tu·al·ized, in·tel·lec·tu·al·iz·ing.

to seek or consider the rational content or form of.
to make intellectual.
to analyze (something) intellectually or rationally.
to ignore the emotional or psychological significance of (an action, feeling, dream, etc.) by an excessively intellectual or abstract explanation.

verb (used without object), in·tel·lec·tu·al·ized, in·tel·lec·tu·al·iz·ing.

to talk or write intellectually; reason; philosophize: to intellectualize about world problems.

Nearby words

  1. intellectual,
  2. intellectual property,
  3. intellectualism,
  4. intellectuality,
  5. intellectualization,
  6. intellectually handicapped,
  7. intelligence,
  8. intelligence agency,
  9. intelligence office,
  10. intelligence officer

Also especially British, in·tel·lec·tu·al·ise.

Origin of intellectualize

First recorded in 1810–20; intellectual + -ize

Related forms Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for over-intellectualize



/ (ˌɪntɪˈlɛktʃʊəˌlaɪz) /


to make or become intellectual
(tr) to treat or consider in an intellectual way; rationalize
Derived Formsintellectualization or intellectualisation, nounintellectualizer or intellectualiser, 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 over-intellectualize



1819, from intellectual + -ize. Related: Intellectualized; intellectualizing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for over-intellectualize


[ ĭn′tl-ĕkchōō-ə-līz′ ]


To furnish a rational structure or meaning for.
To engage in intellectualization.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.