Did You Know?
Something that is dilapidated may not have been literally pummeled with stones, but it might look that way. Dilapidate derives from the past participle of the Latin verb dilapidare, meaning "to squander or destroy." That verb was formed by combining "dis-" with another verb, lapidare, meaning "to pelt with stones." From there it's just a stone's throw to some other English relatives of "dilapidate." You might, for example, notice a resemblance between "lapidare" and our word for a person who cuts or polishes precious stones, "lapidary." That's because both words share as a root the Latin noun lapis, meaning "stone." We also find "lapis" in the name "lapis lazuli," a bright blue semiprecious stone.
Origin and Etymology of dilapidate
Latin dilapidatus, past participle of dilapidare to squander, destroy, from dis- + lapidare to pelt with stones, from lapid-, lapis stone
First Known Use: 1565
Learn More about dilapidate
Britannica English: Translation of dilapidate for Arabic speakers
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