de·​ac·​ti·​vate | \ (ˌ)dē-ˈak-tə-ˌvāt How to pronounce deactivate (audio) \
deactivated; deactivating; deactivates

Definition of deactivate

transitive verb

: to make inactive or ineffective deactivate a bomb deactivate a chemical compound

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Other Words from deactivate

deactivation \ (ˌ)dē-​ˌak-​tə-​ˈvā-​shən How to pronounce deactivation (audio) \ noun
deactivator \ (ˌ)dē-​ˈak-​tə-​ˌvā-​tər How to pronounce deactivator (audio) \ noun

Examples of deactivate in a Sentence

deactivate the machine carefully, or you'll risk an electric shock
Recent Examples on the Web Much of Wolfie James has been scrubbed from the Internet; her Twitter account is deactivated. Monica Hesse, Washington Post, "Wolfie James and the insidious role of female white nationalists," 14 Aug. 2019 At the time of publishing, both Cardi's Facebook and Twitter accounts have not been deactivated. Nicole Saunders, Harper's BAZAAR, "Cardi B Deletes Instagram After Social Media Backlash Over Her Historic Grammys Win," 12 Feb. 2019 The Cardinals deactivated offensive linemen Lamont Gaillard, Joshua Miles (Western Tech), Jeremy Vujnovich, and Brett Toth, wide receiver Andy Isabella, and defensive linemen Jonathan Bullard and Michael Dogbe. Daniel Oyefusi,, "Ravens cornerback Maurice Canady active for home opener vs. Cardinals," 15 Sep. 2019 The Texans deactivated Senio Kelemete, Alex McGough, Jerell Adams, Greg Mancz, Carlos Watkins, Logan Paulsen and Taiwan Jones. Aaron Wilson, Houston Chronicle, "Texans' Keke Coutee, Tytus Howard active for Jaguars game," 15 Sep. 2019 The leavening power is deactivated in the process, but lots of desirable qualities remain. Carla Lalli Music, Bon Appétit, "This Spice Even Makes Salt Taste Better," 11 Sep. 2019 If users take no action, the feature will be deactivated by default. David Z. Morris, Fortune, "Facebook Is Turning Off Its Facial Recognition Features By Default, Continuing a Pivot to Privacy," 3 Sep. 2019 Officials said the lottery recently put in a place a new computer system that will prevent theft by deactivating unused tickets at retail stores — before they are returned to the lottery. Andrea Estes,, "Longtime lottery employee fired for allegedly cashing unsold winning scratch tickets," 20 Aug. 2019 After the council passed its ordinance, nobody deactivated the ICE accounts. Nina Shapiro, The Seattle Times, "Auditor: King County allowed ICE to access jail inmates’ personal information more than 1,000 times," 10 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deactivate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of deactivate

1926, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for deactivate

Last Updated

17 Oct 2019

Time Traveler for deactivate

The first known use of deactivate was in 1926

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More Definitions for deactivate


How to pronounce deactivate (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of deactivate

: to make (something) no longer active or effective


transitive verb
de·​ac·​ti·​vate | \ (ˈ)dē-ˈak-tə-ˌvāt How to pronounce deactivate (audio) \
deactivated; deactivating

Medical Definition of deactivate

1 : to make inactive or ineffective
2 : to deprive of chemical activity deactivate an enzyme

Other Words from deactivate

deactivation \ -​ˌak-​tə-​ˈvā-​shən How to pronounce deactivation (audio) \ noun

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Comments on deactivate

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an agreement to stop fighting a war

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