emas·​cu·​late | \ i-ˈma-skyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce emasculate (audio) \
emasculated; emasculating

Definition of emasculate

transitive verb

1 : to deprive of strength, vigor, or spirit : weaken
2 : to deprive of virility or procreative power : castrate
3 : to remove the androecium of (a flower) in the process of artificial cross-pollination

Other Words from emasculate

emasculate \ i-​ˈma-​skyə-​lət How to pronounce emasculate (audio) \ adjective
emasculation \ i-​ˌma-​skyə-​ˈlā-​shən How to pronounce emasculate (audio) \ noun
emasculator \ i-​ˈma-​skyə-​ˌlā-​tər How to pronounce emasculate (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for emasculate



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Choose the Right Synonym for emasculate

unnerve, enervate, unman, emasculate mean to deprive of strength or vigor and the capacity for effective action. unnerve implies marked often temporary loss of courage, self-control, or power to act. unnerved by the near collision enervate suggests a gradual physical or moral weakening (as through luxury or indolence) until one is too feeble to make an effort. a nation's youth enervated by affluence and leisure unman implies a loss of manly vigor, fortitude, or spirit. a soldier unmanned by the terrors of battle emasculate stresses a depriving of characteristic force by removing something essential. an amendment that emasculates existing safeguards

Examples of emasculate in a Sentence

He plays the role of a meek husband who has been emasculated by his domineering wife. Critics charged that this change would emasculate the law.
Recent Examples on the Web As played by Jackson, Kanan is malice personified, a gleeful killer with a hair-trigger temper and a tendency to humiliate and emasculate his foes. Joshua Alston, Variety, 7 Apr. 2022 The idea that Aladdin is self-conscious about being small is not a strong enough game to carry a sketch, and bringing on Cowboys running back Zeke Elliott to emasculate Aladdin throws this immediately off the rails. Alexis Pereira, Vulture, 10 Oct. 2021 When Peter sends an apparently sincere email begging him to visit and hear his apology, though, C.W. finally decides to confront his past — or, at the very least, flaunt his success and emasculate the guy who got the girl. Ben Rosenstock, Vulture, 11 June 2021 Asian men have generally been emasculated, demasculinized, and historically, black men have often been over-sexualized, the reverse. Annie Howard, Billboard, 16 May 2019 Both women know that forceful men are all often described as strong and assertive, while forceful women are dismissed as angry, emasculating or hectoring. Charlotte Alter, Time, 21 Nov. 2019 Here is a president who seems not to feel shame but who does seem to fear, more than anything else, appearing weak or emasculated. Washington Post, 10 Oct. 2019 The terms are in and of themselves wrong, but being judged on those terms, there’s a level of shame, of feeling emasculated. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, 29 Sep. 2019 He was fitted with a catheter, which was emasculating enough, but the specter of prostate cancer also loomed. Carolita Johnson, Longreads, 28 Oct. 2019 See More

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

First Known Use of emasculate

1607, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for emasculate

Latin emasculatus, past participle of emasculare, from e- + masculus male — more at male

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The first known use of emasculate was in 1607

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Last Updated

19 Apr 2022

Cite this Entry

“Emasculate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/emasculate. Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for emasculate


transitive verb
emas·​cu·​late | \ i-ˈmas-kyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce emasculate (audio) \
emasculated; emasculating

Medical Definition of emasculate

: to deprive of virility or procreative power : castrate

Other Words from emasculate

emasculation \ -​ˌmas-​kyə-​ˈlā-​shən How to pronounce emasculate (audio) \ noun


transitive verb
emas·​cu·​late | \ i-ˈmas-kyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce emasculate (audio) \
emasculated; emasculating

Legal Definition of emasculate

: to deprive (as a law or judicial opinion) of force or effectiveness

More from Merriam-Webster on emasculate

Nglish: Translation of emasculate for Spanish Speakers


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