def·​e·​cate | \ ˈde-fi-ˌkāt How to pronounce defecate (audio) \
defecated; defecating

Definition of defecate

intransitive verb

: to discharge feces from the bowels

transitive verb

12 : to discharge from the anus
2 : to free from impurity or corruption

Examples of defecate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web There’s also an art to ignoring the senior employee who, despite having access to an identical space on her own floor, walks downstairs to defecate in yours. Sloane Crosley, Curbed, 26 Apr. 2021 Symptoms include diarrhea, rectal pain, a sense of urgency to defecate and bleeding. Dr. Keith Roach, oregonlive, 23 Apr. 2021 Ocasio-Cortez was likely referencing a internal company email obtained by the Intercept that shows an Amazon logistics area manager imploring employees not to defecate into bags. Zachary Halaschak, Washington Examiner, 1 Apr. 2021 The scorpion loses its ability to defecate, ensuring a slow death by constipation over the ensuing months. Bradley Allf, Smithsonian Magazine, 1 Mar. 2021 Robinson and Martin might have invited me to defecate in my hat. Scott Ostler, San Francisco Chronicle, 28 Mar. 2021 Your cat might be fine with peeing on clay litter but prefer to defecate in a box filled with sandy clumping litter. Star Tribune, 29 Jan. 2021 Paleontologists reconstructed a dinosaur cloacal vent for the first time, giving insight into how dinosaurs may have used this opening to defecate, urinate, breed and lay eggs—just like birds and reptiles do today. Elizabeth Gamillo, Smithsonian Magazine, 21 Jan. 2021 Patrick became concerned that Kevin would defecate. Justine Van Der Leun, The New Republic, 17 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'defecate.' 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 defecate

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2

History and Etymology for defecate

Latin defaecatus, past participle of defaecare, from de- + faec-, faex dregs, lees

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The first known use of defecate was in the 15th century

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Cite this Entry

“Defecate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for defecate



English Language Learners Definition of defecate

: to pass solid waste from the body


variants: or chiefly British defaecate \ ˈdef-​i-​ˌkāt How to pronounce defecate (audio) \
defecated; defecating

Medical Definition of defecate

transitive verb

: to discharge from the anus

intransitive verb

: to discharge feces from the bowels

More from Merriam-Webster on defecate

Nglish: Translation of defecate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of defecate for Arabic Speakers


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