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verb in·ter·po·late \in-ˈtər-pə-ˌlāt\

: to put (something) between other things or parts; especially : to put (words) into a piece of writing or a conversation


Full Definition of INTERPOLATE

transitive verb
a :  to alter or corrupt (as a text) by inserting new or foreign matter
b :  to insert (words) into a text or into a conversation
:  to insert between other things or parts :  intercalate
:  to estimate values of (data or a function) between two known values
intransitive verb
:  to make insertions (as of estimated values)
in·ter·po·la·tion \-ˌtər-pə-ˈlā-shən\ noun
in·ter·po·la·tive \-ˈtər-pə-ˌlā-tiv\ adjective
in·ter·po·la·tor \-ˌlā-tər\ noun


  1. He smoothly interpolates fragments from other songs into his own.
  2. He interpolated a very critical comment in the discussion.


Latin interpolatus, past participle of interpolare to refurbish, alter, interpolate, from inter- + -polare (from polire to polish)
First Known Use: 1612

Synonym Discussion of INTERPOLATE

introduce, insert, insinuate, interpolate, intercalate, interpose, interject mean to put between or among others. introduce is a general term for bringing or placing a thing or person into a group or body already in existence <introduced a new topic into the conversation>. insert implies putting into a fixed or open space between or among <inserted a clause in the contract>. insinuate implies introducing gradually or by gentle pressure <insinuated himself into the group>. interpolate applies to the inserting of something extraneous or spurious <interpolated her own comments into the report>. intercalate suggests an intrusive inserting of something in an existing series or sequence <new chapters intercalated with the old>. interpose suggests inserting an obstruction or cause of delay <interpose barriers to communication>. interject implies an abrupt or forced introduction <interjected a question>.


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