Definition of eradicate
1 : to pull up by the roots
2 : to do away with as completely as if by pulling up by the roots <programs to eradicate illiteracy>
eradicableplay \i-ˈra-di-kə-bəl\ adjective
eradicationplay \i-ˌra-də-ˈkā-shən\ noun
eradicatorplay \i-ˈra-di-ˌkā-tər\ noun
Examples of eradicate in a sentence
The disease has now been completely eradicated.
His ambition is to eradicate poverty in his community.
Did You Know?
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.
Origin and Etymology of eradicate
Latin eradicatus, past participle of eradicare, from e- + radic-, radix root — more at root
First Known Use: 1532
Synonym Discussion of eradicate
ERADICATE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of eradicate for English Language Learners
: to remove (something) completely : to eliminate or destroy (something harmful)
ERADICATE Defined for Kids
Definition of eradicate for Students
: to destroy completely <The disease has been eradicated.>
Seen and Heard
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