Dictionary

1assimilate

verb as·sim·i·late \ə-ˈsi-mə-ˌlāt\

: to learn (something) so that it is fully understood and can be used

: to cause (a person or group) to become part of a different society, country, etc.

: to adopt the ways of another culture : to fully become part of a different society, country, etc.

as·sim·i·lat·edas·sim·i·lat·ing

Full Definition of ASSIMILATE

transitive verb
1
a :  to take in and utilize as nourishment :  absorb into the system
b :  to take into the mind and thoroughly comprehend
2
a :  to make similar
b :  to alter by assimilation
c :  to absorb into the culture or mores of a population or group
3
:  compare, liken
intransitive verb
:  to be taken in or absorbed :  to become assimilated
as·sim·i·la·tor \-ˌlā-tər\ noun

Usage Discussion of ASSIMILATE



When assimilate is followed by a preposition, transitive senses 2a and 2c commonly take to and into and less frequently with; 2b regularly takes to; sense 3 most often takes to and sometimes with. The most frequent prepositions used with the intransitive sense are to and into.
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Examples of ASSIMILATE

  1. Children need to assimilate new ideas.
  2. There was a lot of information to assimilate at school.
  3. Schools were used to assimilate the children of immigrants.
  4. They found it hard to assimilate to American society.
  5. Many of these religious traditions have been assimilated into the culture.
  6. Over time, most of the inhabitants of the Little Italiesassimilated rapidly to the society … —Stephan Thernstrom, Times Literary Supplement, 26 May 2000

Origin of ASSIMILATE

Middle English, from Medieval Latin assimilatus, past participle of assimilare, from Latin assimulare to make similar, from ad- + simulare to make similar, simulate
First Known Use: 15th century

Rhymes with ASSIMILATE

abbreviate, abominate, accelerate, accentuate, accommodate, acculturate, accumulate, adjudicate, adulterate, affiliate, agglomerate, alienate, alleviate, alliterate, amalgamate, ameliorate, amyl nitrate, annihilate, annunciate, anticipate, apostolate, appreciate, appropriate, approximate, arpeggiate, articulate, asphyxiate, assassinate, asseverate, associate, at any rate, attenuate, authenticate, barbiturate, bicarbonate, calumniate, capacitate, capitulate, catholicate, certificate, coagulate, coelenterate, collaborate, commemorate, commiserate, communicate, compassionate, concatenate, conciliate, confabulate, confederate, conglomerate, congratulate, consolidate, contaminate, cooperate, coordinate, corroborate, deactivate, debilitate, decapitate, decelerate, decerebrate, deconcentrate, deconsecrate, decorticate, decrepitate, de-escalate, defibrinate, defoliate, degenerate, deliberate, delineate, demodulate, denominate, depopulate, depreciate, deracinate, deregulate, desegregate, desiderate, detoxicate, devaluate, diaconate, dilapidate, discriminate, disintegrate, disseminate, dissimulate, dissociate, domesticate, effectuate, ejaculate, elaborate, electroplate, eliminate, elucidate, emaciate, emancipate, emasculate, encapsulate, enumerate, enunciate, episcopate, equivocate, eradicate, etiolate, evacuate, evaluate, evaporate, eventuate, eviscerate, exacerbate, exaggerate, exasperate, excited state, excogitate, excoriate, exfoliate, exhilarate, exonerate, expatiate, expatriate, expectorate, expostulate, expropriate, extenuate, exterminate, extrapolate, facilitate, felicitate, fish or cut bait, garrison state, gesticulate, habilitate, habituate, hallucinate, humiliate, hydrogenate, hypothecate, illuminate, impersonate, inactivate, inaugurate, incarcerate, incinerate, incorporate, incriminate, indoctrinate, inebriate, infatuate, infuriate, ingratiate, ingurgitate, initiate, inoculate, inseminate, insinuate, instantiate, intercalate, interpolate, interrelate, interrogate, intimidate, intoxicate, invalidate, investigate, invigorate, irradiate, Italianate, Korea Strait, lanceolate, legitimate, luxuriate, mandarinate, manipulate, matriarchate, matriculate, Merthiolate, necessitate, negotiate, noncandidate, obliterate, officiate, Orange Free State, orientate, originate, oxygenate, participate, particulate, patriarchate, patriciate, perambulate, peregrinate, perpetuate, pontificate, precipitate, predestinate, predominate, prefabricate, premeditate, preponderate, prevaricate, procrastinate, prognosticate, proliferate, propitiate, proportionate, quadruplicate, quintuplicate, reciprocate, recriminate, recuperate, redecorate, reduplicate, reeducate, refrigerate, regenerate, regurgitate, reincarnate, reintegrate, reiterate, rejuvenate, remunerate, repatriate, repudiate, resuscitate, retaliate, reticulate, revaluate, reverberate, scholasticate, second estate, self-flagellate, self-immolate, self-pollinate, seventy-eight, sextuplicate, Singapore Strait, sophisticate, subordinate, substantiate, syllabicate, tergiversate, transliterate, triangulate, vanity plate, variegate, vaticinate, vituperate, vociferate

2assimilate

noun as·sim·i·late \ə-ˈsi-mə-lət, -ˌlāt\

Definition of ASSIMILATE

:  something that is assimilated (see 1assimilate)

Origin of ASSIMILATE

(see 1assimilate)
First Known Use: 1935

Other Biology Terms

autochthonous, fecund, homunculus, phylogeny, substrate
ASSIMILATOR Defined for Kids

assimilate

verb as·sim·i·late \ə-ˈsi-mə-ˌlāt\
as·sim·i·lat·edas·sim·i·lat·ing

Definition of ASSIMILATE for Kids

1
:  to become or cause to become part of a different group or country <She was completely assimilated into her new country.>
2
:  to take in and make part of a larger thing <The body assimilates nutrients in food.>
3
:  to learn thoroughly <assimilate new ideas>

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