Simple Definition of vitiate
: to make (something) less effective : to ruin or spoil (something)
Full Definition of vitiate
1 : to make faulty or defective : impair <the comic impact is vitiated by obvious haste — William Styron>
2 : to debase in moral or aesthetic status <a mind vitiated by prejudice>
3 : to make ineffective <fraud vitiates a contract>
vitiationplay \ˌvi-shē-ˈā-shən\ noun
vitiatorplay \ˈvi-shē-ˌā-tər\ noun
Examples of vitiate in a sentence
The impact of the film was vitiated by poor acting.
<believed that luxury vitiates even the most principled person>
Did You Know?
Here's one for word puzzle lovers - and anyone else allured by alliteration. The sentence "Vivian vituperated the vicious villain for valuing vice over virtue" contains three words that derive from the same Latin source as "vitiate." Can you identify all three? If you picked "vituperate" (a verb meaning "to scold"), "vicious," and "vice," your puzzle prowess is beyond reproach. Like "vitiate," all three descend from the Latin noun vitium, meaning "fault" or "vice."
Origin and Etymology of vitiate
Latin vitiatus, past participle of vitiare, from vitium fault, vice
First Known Use: 1534
Synonym Discussion of vitiate
Legal Definition of vitiate
: to make ineffective <fraud vitiates a contract>
Seen and Heard
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