ex·​co·​ri·​ate | \ ek-ˈskȯr-ē-ˌāt How to pronounce excoriate (audio) \
excoriated; excoriating

Definition of excoriate

transitive verb

1 : to wear off the skin of : abrade
2 : to censure scathingly

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Other Words from excoriate

excoriation \ (ˌ)ek-​ˌskȯr-​ē-​ˈā-​shən How to pronounce excoriation (audio) \ noun

Did You Know?

Excoriate, which first appeared in English in the 15th century, comes from "excoriatus," the past participle of the Late Latin verb excoriare, meaning "to strip off the hide." "Excoriare" was itself formed from a pairing of the Latin prefix ex-, meaning "out," and corium, meaning "skin" or "hide" or "leather." "Corium" has several other descendants in English. One is "cuirass," a name for a piece of armor that covers the body from neck to waist (or something, such as bony plates covering an animal, that resembles such armor). Another is "corium" itself, which is sometimes used as a synonym of "dermis" (the inner layer of human skin).

Examples of excoriate in a Sentence

He was excoriated as a racist. The candidates have publicly excoriated each other throughout the campaign.

Recent Examples on the Web

In other news of the week: On New Year’s Day, Mitt Romney penned an editorial in the Washington Post, excoriating the president for his lack of character. Lynn Yaeger, Vogue, "The Week in Washington: A Shutdown with No End in Sight," 6 Jan. 2019 That, combined with an excoriating inspector general report that found Dr. Shulkin misspent public funds on travel, eventually led to his ouster. New York Times, "V.A. Medical System Staggers as Chaos Engulfs Its Leadership," 4 May 2018 And the guy Trump wants to be the next attorney general—William Barr—auditioned for the job in June by submitting a lengthy unsolicited memo excoriating the Russia probe. Lynn Yaeger, Vogue, "The Week in Washington: “The Most Chaotic Presidency Ever”," 23 Dec. 2018 Diane Piagentini, the widow of one of the slain New York officers, excoriated Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who appointed the board members. Eliott C. Mclaughlin, CNN, "Police, widow blast New York decision to parole 3-time cop killer," 30 Apr. 2018 California officials wasted no time Monday in excoriating the decision. The Washington Post, OregonLive.com, "Andrew McCabe raises $553K on GoFundMe, more than 3 times his goal," 2 Apr. 2018 He was excoriated earlier this year for having defended a Chilean bishop accused of witnessing and ignoring abuse by Chile’s most notorious predator priest. Nicole Winfield, The Seattle Times, "Vatican expert wants accountability on abuse summit agenda," 8 Oct. 2018 Nafta was excoriated during the 2016 presidential campaign, and President Trump, a veteran of marketing and branding, has sought to change the name. William Mauldin, WSJ, "Ten Things to Know About the Nafta Deal," 1 Oct. 2018 Many of the legal and regulatory changes that Brill excoriates have counterintuitive beginnings. New York Times, "America Has Gone Off the Rails. Steven Brill Sees Ways to Get It Back on Track.," 2 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for excoriate

Middle English, from Late Latin excoriatus, past participle of excoriare, from Latin ex- + corium skin, hide — more at cuirass

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Time Traveler for excoriate

The first known use of excoriate was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of excoriate

formal : to criticize (someone or something) very harshly

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