ex·​pa·​tri·​ate | \ ek-ˈspā-trē-ˌāt How to pronounce expatriate (audio) \
expatriated; expatriating

Definition of expatriate

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : banish, exile
2 : to withdraw (oneself) from residence in or allegiance to one's native country

intransitive verb

: to leave one's native country to live elsewhere also : to renounce allegiance to one's native country


ex·​pa·​tri·​ate | \ ek-ˈspā-trē-ət How to pronounce expatriate (audio) , -trē-ˌāt\

Definition of expatriate (Entry 2 of 3)

: living in a foreign land


ex·​pa·​tri·​ate | \ ek-ˈspā-trē-ˌāt How to pronounce expatriate (audio) , -ət\

Definition of expatriate (Entry 3 of 3)

: a person who lives in a foreign country Hemingway himself in The Sun Also Rises, 1926, had given the picture of the dislocated life of young English and American expatriates in the bars of Paris, the "lost generation," as Gertrude Stein defined them.— Robert Penn Warren

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for expatriate

Synonyms: Verb

banish, deport, displace, exile, relegate, transport

Synonyms: Noun

deportee, émigré (also emigré), evacuee, exile, expat [chiefly British], refugee

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of expatriate in a Sentence


members of the deposed dictator's once-feared political party were expatriated as well

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In the 2000s, anti-Chinese sentiment resulted in riots in the Solomon Islands, PNG and Tonga, where a fatal unrest prompted Beijing to send a charter plane to expatriate around 200 Chinese nationals. Julia Hollingsworth, CNN, "Why China is challenging Australia for influence over the Pacific Islands," 22 July 2019 When Mary Richards was a child, Van Lew expatriated her to Liberia, reflecting a disturbing belief shared by pro-slavery and anti-slavery whites that free blacks had no place in this country. Lois Leveen, Time, "She Was Born Into Slavery, Was a Spy and Is Celebrated as a Hero—But We're Missing the Point of the 'Mary Bowser' Story," 19 June 2019 Plus, several Manhattan chefs have expatriated to the town, so, yum. Devin Alessio, ELLE Decor, "Take A Weekend Getaway In Hudson, New York," 16 Sep. 2016 The obstacles include the precedent that the Constitution does not allow the government to expatriate Americans against their will, through a landmark 1967 case, Afroyim v. Rusk. Charlie Savage, New York Times, "Trump Calls for Revoking Flag Burners’ Citizenship. Court Rulings Forbid It.," 29 Nov. 2016

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective

Multinational companies, expatriate workers and wealthy individuals looking to stash their assets somewhere safer than Hong Kong will flee for Asia’s next best thing, the thinking goes among some observers. Los Angeles Times, "Singapore prefers its Speakers’ Corner to the Hong Kong protests, thank you," 14 Aug. 2019 He was born on March 29, 1928, in Brussels to an expatriate American father, Willard Hudson Botsford, and an Italian mother, Carolina Elena Rangoni-Machiavelli-Publicola-Santacroce. Bill Morris, New York Times, "Keith Botsford, Man of Letters and Saul Bellow Associate, Dies at 90," 14 June 2019 He was born on March 29, 1928, in Brussels to an expatriate American father, Willard Hudson Botsford, and an Italian mother, Carolina Elena Rangoni-Machiavelli-Publicola-Santacroce. Bill Morris, BostonGlobe.com, "Keith Botsford, man of letters and Saul Bellow associate, dies at 90," 18 June 2019 Sow was one of the first to settle in Greater Cincinnati, which is now considered the largest expatriate Mauritanian community in the United States. Mark Curnutte, Cincinnati.com, "'I do everything all Americans do.' Home but for how long? ICE releases Mauritanian man after 11 months," 16 July 2019 For the first time in four years, Singapore is not the best destination for expatriate workers, according to HSBC’s Expat 2019 Global Report released today. Adam Rasmi, Quartz, "The top ten countries for expats," 3 July 2019 In the New Territories seaside village of Sheung Sze Wan, home to many expatriate business people, waves lapped at a row of houses normally several feet above sea level. John Lyons, WSJ, "Typhoon Mangkhut Leaves Trail of Destruction, Dozens Dead," 16 Sep. 2018 The religious institutions serve a population composed almost entirely of expatriate workers from Asia, Europe and beyond. Asa Fitch, WSJ, "In Arab Nation, Christians, Buddhists and Jews Emerge to Worship," 27 Jan. 2019 Where to Eat and Drink Pizzeria Maresia This popular spot close to the beach is owned and run by an expatriate Italian. Laird Borrelli-persson, Vogue, "An Insider’s Guide to Atins, a Hidden Paradise on the Northeast Coast of Brazil," 18 Jan. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Partly due to its status as a global financial hub, Hong Kong is a major destination for expatriates from across the world. Ben Westcott, CNN, "A military crackdown in Hong Kong would backfire on China's economy," 5 Aug. 2019 Juan Correa Villalonga, chief operating officer of a Venezuelan expatriate group called the Association of Venezuelan Mothers and Women Abroad, told USA TODAY. Maureen Groppe, USA TODAY, "'Vaseline after the burn wound': How Mike Pence plays Trump's opposite with foreign leaders," 14 July 2019 Brazil had won five World Cup soccer championships and produced international road racing and tennis champions, but golf had largely remained a niche sport in the country, reserved for wealthy businessmen and expatriates. Richard Goldstein, New York Times, "Mario Gonzalez, Father of Golf in Brazil, Is Dead at 96," 1 Aug. 2019 Still, scholars and Cuban expatriates will quibble with Hansen’s characterization of the revolution’s radical turn subsequently. Michael J. Bustamante, Washington Post, "Portrait of a young Castro, drawn from his personal archive," 5 July 2019 The second was a love of English culture and literature, after his father started him on thrice weekly English lessons with a British expatriate living in Florence. Colleen Barry, San Diego Union-Tribune, "Famed Italian director Franco Zeffirelli dies at age 96," 15 June 2019 The traditional method, where service members or expatriates request ballots by mail and submit absentee votes, isn’t tamper-proof and relies on sometimes-spotty postal services. Caitlin Ostroff, WSJ, "Blockchain at the Ballot Box? Maybe Someday," 1 Aug. 2018 Emiratis and expatriates attended the funeral in their thousands. Fox News, "Thousands of mourners attend funeral of UAE prince, 39, who died in London apartment following alleged drug-fueled party," 4 July 2019 Leonard, the Spurs expatriate fresh off leading Toronto to its first NBA championship and earning his second Finals MVP trophy, is considered the big fish of this year’s free agency class. Jeff Mcdonald, ExpressNews.com, "Spurs set for quiet start to free agency," 29 June 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of expatriate


1768, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1812, in the meaning defined above


1818, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for expatriate


Medieval Latin expatriatus, past participle of expatriare to leave one's own country, from Latin ex- + patria native country, from feminine of patrius of a father, from patr-, pater father — more at father

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about expatriate

Listen to Our Podcast about expatriate

Dictionary Entries near expatriate

ex parte







Statistics for expatriate

Last Updated

17 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for expatriate

The first known use of expatriate was in 1768

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for expatriate



English Language Learners Definition of expatriate

: a person who lives in a foreign country


ex·​pa·​tri·​ate | \ ek-ˈspā-trē-ˌāt How to pronounce expatriate (audio) \
expatriated; expatriating

Legal Definition of expatriate

transitive verb

: to voluntarily withdraw (oneself) from allegiance to one's native country

intransitive verb

: to renounce allegiance to one's country and abandon one's nationality voluntarily

Other Words from expatriate

expatriate \ -​trē-​ət \ noun
expatriation \ ek-​ˌspā-​trē-​ˈā-​shən How to pronounce expatriation (audio) \ noun

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on expatriate

What made you want to look up expatriate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to spread over or through

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!