[ tur-muh-neyt ]
/ ˈtɜr məˌneɪt /

verb (used with object), ter·mi·nat·ed, ter·mi·nat·ing.

verb (used without object), ter·mi·nat·ed, ter·mi·nat·ing.

Nearby words

  1. terminal platform,
  2. terminal stria,
  3. terminal sulcus,
  4. terminal velocity,
  5. terminally,
  6. terminating decimal,
  7. terminatio,
  8. termination,
  9. termination codon,
  10. terminator

Origin of terminate

1580–90; v. use of late Middle English terminate (adj.) limited < Latin terminātus, past participle of termināre. See term, -ate1

Related forms
Can be confuseddownsize fire lay off rightsize terminate

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

Examples from the Web for terminate

British Dictionary definitions for terminate


/ (ˈtɜːmɪˌneɪt) /


(when intr, often foll by in or with) to form, be, or put an end (to); concludeto terminate a pregnancy; their relationship terminated amicably
(tr) to connect (suitable circuitry) to the end of an electrical transmission line to absorb the energy and avoid reflections
(intr) maths (of a decimal expansion) to have only a finite number of digits
(tr) slang to kill (someone)
Derived Formsterminative, adjectiveterminatory, adjective

Word Origin for terminate

C16: from Latin terminātus limited, from termināre to set boundaries, from terminus end

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 terminate



1610s, "to bring to an end," from Latin terminatus, past participle of terminare "to limit, end" (see terminus). Sense of "to come to an end" is recorded from 1640s; meaning "dismiss from a job" is recorded from 1973; that of "to assassinate" is from 1975. Related: Terminated; terminating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper