ex·​pa·​tri·​ate | \ek-ˈspā-trē-ˌāt \
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, -trē-ˌāt\

Definition of expatriate (Entry 2 of 3)

: living in a foreign land


ex·​pa·​tri·​ate | \ek-ˈspā-trē-ˌāt, -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

Other Words from expatriate


expatriation \(ˌ)ek-​ˌspā-​trē-​ˈā-​shən \ noun

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

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

By contrast, the Axis goals were arguably more modest: mostly to deny regional resources to their enemies and to maintain ties to their expatriate communities. Nicholas Reynolds, WSJ, "‘The Tango War’ Review: The Southern Theater," 24 Oct. 2018 Saudi Arabia is attempting to reduce this unemployment rate through initiatives such as levies on firms that employ expatriate workers and by enforcing stricter nationalization quotas in the private sector. Donna Abdulaziz, WSJ, "Saudi Arabia Plans More Spending to Boost Sluggish Growth," 30 Sep. 2018 Buried inside the order is a section requiring all expatriate workers to undergo formal Indonesian language training, an apparent first for any nation in Southeast Asia. Joe Cochrane, New York Times, "Indonesia’s Order to Foreign Workers: Learn the Language," 23 June 2018 For decades, expatriate workers from countries such as India and the Philippines helped sustain Saudi Arabia’s high living standards by doing jobs Saudis wouldn’t do in kitchens, at construction sites and behind store counters. Margherita Stancati, WSJ, "Saudi Arabia’s Economic Revamp Means More Jobs for Saudis—If Only They Wanted Them," 19 June 2018 The venues for the event are being built by mainly expatriate workers from South Asia and elsewhere. Amy B Wang, Washington Post, "How a maid found dead in a freezer set off a diplomatic clash between the Philippines and Kuwait," 3 Apr. 2018 At a museum on the Rue d’Amerique, a youthful Mrabet appears in photos and postcards featuring the late American expatriate writer Paul Bowles. Sudarsan Raghavan, Washington Post, "Rediscovered in the alleys of Tangier, Morocco’s last link to the Beat Generation feels broken," 12 May 2018 Erdogan is hoping to cement his grip on power in an election this month and some 1.4 million expatriate Turks are eligible to vote in Germany. Ciaran Fahey, Fox News, "Questions of loyalty cast shadow over German World Cup squad," 13 June 2018 The controversial moment came after a lengthy speech by the president to a crowd of expatriate Filipinos in Seoul. Euan Mckirdy, CNN, "Duterte's kiss was 'act of endearment,' spokesman says," 4 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Fornés’s art studies would eventually lead her to meet Harriet Sohmers, a bohemian artist’s model and expatriate who encouraged Fornés to join her in Paris. Janelle Okwodu, Vogue, "María Irene Fornés, the Cuban Playwright Who Changed Theater, Dies at 88," 31 Oct. 2018 Overseas, most employees are local nationals, but the 5 percent or so of expatriates are handsomely compensated. Houston Chronicle, "Competition for top talent keeps pay scale high in oil industry," 13 July 2018 Yogurt was still considered a weird, sour interloper reserved for European expatriates and health nuts. Kim Severson, New York Times, "Is America Ready to Love Cottage Cheese Again?," 26 June 2018 The base could also be used as a springboard into Africa and the Middle East, both of which have significant numbers of Chinese expatriates. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Satellite Images Spy China's First Overseas Military Base," 9 Nov. 2017 The rest hail from all over the Middle East, from Egypt to Afghanistan, along with a sprinkling of expatriates from the United States, South Korea, Nigeria, and elsewhere. Richard Mcgill Murphy, Town & Country, "Desert Prep," 17 Dec. 2012 On Wednesday, Vice President Michael Pence is scheduled to speak to Venezuelan expatriates in Miami. WSJ, "U.S. Weighs Restricting Trades in Venezuelan Debt to Punish Maduro," 23 Aug. 2017 Hong Kong is a popular destination for expatriates, many of whom work in the city’s financial services and legal sectors. NBC News, "Top Hong Kong court grants U.K. lesbian right to spousal visa," 4 July 2018 Many expatriates stayed, and American companies kept buying and selling Saudi oil. Stanley Reed, New York Times, "An Oil Giant Is Taking Big Steps. Saudi Arabia Can’t Afford for It to Slip.," 16 June 2018

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

Share expatriate

Listen to Our Podcast about expatriate

Dictionary Entries near expatriate

ex parte







Statistics for expatriate

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


ex·​pa·​tri·​ate | \ek-ˈspā-trē-ˌāt \
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 \ 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).


a soft lustrous wool fabric with mohair

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Late Autumn 2018 Words of the Day Quiz

  • frosted-autumn-leaves
  • Which is a synonym of yahoo?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

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!