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verb (used with object), sub·stan·ti·at·ed, sub·stan·ti·at·ing.
  1. to establish by proof or competent evidence: to substantiate a charge.
  2. to give substantial existence to: to substantiate an idea through action.
  3. to affirm as having substance; give body to; strengthen: to substantiate a friendship.
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Origin of substantiate

1650–60; < New Latin substantiātus (past participle of substantiāre), equivalent to Latin substanti(a) substance + -ātus -ate1
Related formssub·stan·ti·a·ta·ble, adjectivesub·stan·ti·a·tion, nounsub·stan·ti·a·tive, adjectivesub·stan·ti·a·tor, nounnon·sub·stan·ti·a·tion, nounre·sub·stan·ti·ate, verb (used with object), re·sub·stan·ti·at·ed, re·sub·stan·ti·at·ing.re·sub·stan·ti·a·tion, nounun·sub·stan·ti·at·a·ble, adjective


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Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for substantiate

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • You have no right to permit them to live longer than to substantiate your theory.

    The Monster Men

    Edgar Rice Burroughs

  • And yet something there would surely be by which I could substantiate my story.

    Danger! and Other Stories

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • To the end that he may substantiate his objections, he proposes to examine the prisoner.

    An Outcast

    F. Colburn Adams

  • To substantiate this claim of the mosques, a brief digression is necessary.

    Travels in the Far East

    Ellen Mary Hayes Peck

  • Now here is a fact which official records go to substantiate.


    Edgar Wallace

British Dictionary definitions for substantiate


verb (tr)
  1. to establish as valid or genuine
  2. to give form or real existence to
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Derived Formssubstantiation, nounsubstantiative, adjectivesubstantiator, noun

Word Origin

C17: from New Latin substantiāre, from Latin substantia substance
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 substantiate


1650s, "to make real, to give substance to," from Modern Latin substantiatus, past participle of substantiare, from Latin substantia (see substance). Meaning "to demonstrate or prove" is attested from 1803. Related: Substantiated; substantiating.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper