Definition of excavate
1 : to form a cavity or hole in
2 : to form by hollowing out
3 : to dig out and remove
4 : to expose to view by or as if by digging away a covering excavate the remains of a temple
: to make excavations
Examples of excavate in a Sentence
They excavated an ancient city.
It is the first site to be excavated in this area.
They began excavating the backyard for their new pool.
The excess dirt was carefully excavated.
Recent Examples of excavate from the Web
Odebrecht won the project to excavate tunnels for a train line to run under the city of Buenos Aires in 2013, during the Fernandez administration.
Much of the expansive zone has never been excavated.
In 2004, a fossilized polar bear jawbone 110,000 years old was excavated from a coastal cliff in Norway.
Chinese archaeologists began excavating Shangshan in the early 2000s.
With that to go on, a Defense Department team excavated the fish pond between October and December 2015.
The bones of Zeynel Bey, which were excavated several years ago and have been kept off-site to deter looting, will be reinterred.
Just as Ms. Boulé explored the hidden spaces of her body, Mr. Spence excavated the private space of home in a work featuring himself and Joanna Kotze.
Unfortunately, there was no basement (a small matter resolved by excavating an enormous hole beneath the house).
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'excavate'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of excavate
Latin excavatus, past participle of excavare, from ex- + cavare to make hollow — more at cavatina
First Known Use: 1599
EXCAVATE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of excavate for English Language Learners
: to uncover (something) by digging away and removing the earth that covers it
: to dig a large hole in (something)
: to form (a hole, tunnel, etc.) by digging
EXCAVATE Defined for Kids
Definition of excavate for Students
1 : to expose to view by digging away a covering They've excavated an ancient city.
2 : to hollow out : form a hole in Workers excavated the side of a hill.
3 : to make by hollowing out We must excavate a tunnel.
4 : to dig out and remove Miners excavate diamonds.
Seen and Heard
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