eradicate

verb
erad·​i·​cate | \ i-ˈra-də-ˌkāt How to pronounce eradicate (audio) \
eradicated; eradicating

Definition of eradicate

transitive verb

1 : to do away with as completely as if by pulling up by the roots programs to eradicate illiteracy
2 : to pull up by the roots

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Other Words from eradicate

eradicable \ i-​ˈra-​di-​kə-​bəl How to pronounce eradicable (audio) \ adjective
eradication \ i-​ˌra-​də-​ˈkā-​shən How to pronounce eradication (audio) \ noun
eradicator \ i-​ˈra-​di-​ˌkā-​tər How to pronounce eradicator (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for eradicate

exterminate, extirpate, eradicate, uproot mean to effect the destruction or abolition of something. exterminate implies complete and immediate extinction by killing off all individuals. exterminate cockroaches extirpate implies extinction of a race, family, species, or sometimes an idea or doctrine by destruction or removal of its means of propagation. many species have been extirpated from the area eradicate implies the driving out or elimination of something that has established itself. a campaign to eradicate illiteracy uproot implies a forcible or violent removal and stresses displacement or dislodgment rather than immediate destruction. the war uprooted thousands

The Root of Eradicate Is, Literally, Root

Given that eradicate first meant "to pull up by the roots," it's not surprising that the root of eradicate is, in fact, "root." Eradicate, which first turned up in English in the 16th century, comes from eradicatus, the past participle of the Latin verb eradicare. Eradicare, in turn, can be traced back to the Latin word radix, meaning "root" or "radish." Although eradicate began life as a word for literal uprooting, by the mid-17th century it had developed a metaphorical application to removing things the way one might yank an undesirable weed up by the roots. Other descendants of radix in English include radical and radish. Even the word root itself is related; it comes from the same ancient word that gave Latin radix.

Examples of eradicate in a Sentence

The disease has now been completely eradicated. His ambition is to eradicate poverty in his community.

Recent Examples on the Web

Rats were removed from Anacapa Island, in Channel Islands National Park, about 15 years ago using an aerial drop. House mice have been eradicated from more than 50 islands worldwide, officials said. Peter Fimrite, SFChronicle.com, "Coastal Commission to consider poisoning mice to restore balance on Farallon Islands," 10 July 2019 The program, which has spent $16 billion over 30 years, had planned to eradicate polio from Pakistan and Afghanistan this year (only the latest of many deadlines). Leslie Roberts, Science | AAAS, "Surging cases have dashed all hope that polio might be eradicated in 2019," 10 July 2019 Vaccinations have all but eradicated many diseases – from diphtheria to polio – but a new generation of parents who refuse to vaccinate their children is threatening the progress that’s been made, experts say. Laura Hancock, cleveland.com, "New Ohio bill takes shot at employers who want workers vaccinated," 3 June 2019 The Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center, a collaboration involving the University of Massachusetts Lowell and Worcester campuses, has been chosen as one of eight business incubators to help eradicate the flu and sepsis. Morgan Hughes, BostonGlobe.com, "Curing the flu, wedding dresses for soldiers, and food for the elderly," 13 July 2018 Towns like Collingswood, New Jersey, are moving to eradicate the company from its neighborhoods, drawing ire from residents who are trying to utilize extra space in their homes to supplement their income. Tauhid Chappell, Philly.com, "Supreme Courts decision could affect Pennsylvania politics, two casinos open in Atlantic city | Morning Newsletter," 28 June 2018 Lurie, founder of Tipping Point, has raised $30 million since 2005 to help eradicate poverty in the Bay Area. Dominic Fracassa, San Francisco Chronicle, "SF’s mayor candidates take up challenge to house 1,000 people in first year," 4 May 2018 In 2017 Mr Macron all but eradicated the Socialists on the left. The Economist, "France’s Republican party faces extinction," 29 June 2019 In some editions June 21, a U.S. News article about a California bill regarding medical exemptions from vaccines incorrectly said that measles was declared eradicated. WSJ, "Corrections & Amplifications," 27 June 2019

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

1532, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for eradicate

Latin eradicatus, past participle of eradicare, from e- + radic-, radix root — more at root

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Dictionary Entries near eradicate

era

eradiate

eradicant

eradicate

eradicative

Eragrostis

eranthemum

Statistics for eradicate

Last Updated

21 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for eradicate

The first known use of eradicate was in 1532

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More Definitions for eradicate

eradicate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of eradicate

formal : to remove (something) completely : to eliminate or destroy (something harmful)

eradicate

verb
erad·​i·​cate | \ i-ˈra-də-ˌkāt How to pronounce eradicate (audio) \
eradicated; eradicating

Kids Definition of eradicate

: to destroy completely The disease has been eradicated.

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Comments on eradicate

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