extract

verb
ex·​tract | \ ik-ˈstrakt How to pronounce extract (audio) , usually in sense 5 ˈek-ˌstrakt \
extracted; extracting; extracts

Definition of extract

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to draw forth (as by research) extract data
b : to pull or take out forcibly extracted a wisdom tooth
c : to obtain by much effort from someone unwilling extracted a confession
2a : to withdraw (something, such as a juice or a constituent element) by physical or chemical process
b : to treat with a solvent so as to remove a soluble substance
3 : to separate (a metal) from an ore
4 : to determine (a mathematical root) by calculation
5 : to select (excerpts) and copy out or cite

extract

noun
ex·​tract | \ ˈek-ˌstrakt How to pronounce extract (audio) \

Definition of extract (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a selection from a writing or discourse : excerpt
2 : a product (such as an essence or concentrate) prepared by extracting especially : a solution (as in alcohol) of essential constituents of a complex material (such as meat or an aromatic plant)

Other Words from extract

Verb

extractability \ ik-​ˌstrak-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce extract (audio) , (ˌ)ek-​ \ noun
extractable \ ik-​ˈstrak-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce extract (audio) , ˈek-​ˌstrak-​ \ adjective

Synonyms for extract

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Choose the Right Synonym for extract

Verb

educe, evoke, elicit, extract, extort mean to draw out something hidden, latent, or reserved. educe implies the bringing out of something potential or latent. educed order out of chaos evoke implies a strong stimulus that arouses an emotion or an interest or recalls an image or memory. a song that evokes warm memories elicit usually implies some effort or skill in drawing forth a response. careful questioning elicited the truth extract implies the use of force or pressure in obtaining answers or information. extracted a confession from him extort suggests a wringing or wresting from one who resists strongly. extorted their cooperation by threatening to inform

Do you exact or extract revenge?

The verb exact (as in, "exacting revenge" or "exacting a promise") is not as commonly encountered as the adjective exact, (as in "an exact copy" or "exact measurements"). Sometimes people will mistakenly use the more common verb extract when they really want exact. Extract can refer to removing something by pulling or cutting or to getting information from someone who does not want to give it. While both words refer to getting something they are used in different ways. You extract a tooth, but you exact revenge.

The Crisscrossing Histories of Abstract and Extract

Verb

Abstract is most frequently used as an adjective (“abstract ideas”) and a noun (“an abstract of the article”), but its somewhat less common use as a verb in English helps to clarify its Latin roots. The verb abstract is used to mean “summarize,” as in “abstracting an academic paper.” This meaning is a figurative derivative of the verb’s meanings “to remove” or “to separate.”

We trace the origins of abstract to the combination of the Latin roots ab-, a prefix meaning “from” or “away,” with the verb trahere, meaning “to pull” or “to draw.” The result was the Latin verb abstrahere, which meant “to remove forcibly” or “to drag away.” Its past participle abstractus had the meanings “removed,” “secluded,” “incorporeal,” and, ultimately, “summarized,” meanings which came to English from Medieval Latin.

Interestingly, the word passed from Latin into French with competing spellings as both abstract (closer to the Latin) and abstrait (which reflected the French form of abstrahere, abstraire), the spelling retained in modern French.

The idea of “removing” or “pulling away” connects abstract to extract, which stems from Latin through the combination of trahere with the prefix ex-, meaning “out of” or “away from.” Extract forms a kind of mirror image of abstract: more common as a verb, but also used as a noun and adjective. The adjective, meaning “derived or descended,” is now obsolete, as is a sense of the noun that overlapped with abstract, “summary.” The words intersected and have separated in modern English, but it’s easy to see that abstract applies to something that has been summarized, and summarized means “extracted from a larger work.”

Examples of extract in a Sentence

Verb He extracted a credit card from his wallet. I had to have a tooth extracted. The tumor was surgically extracted. We finally extracted a confession from him. Investigators were able to extract useful information from the company's financial records. They are hoping to extract new insights from the test results. The machines extract the juice from the apples. oil extracted from sunflower seeds venom extracted from poisonous snakes Noun The recipe calls for a tablespoon of vanilla extract. the anthology includes a long extract from the epic poem
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb To extract further efficiencies, farming is increasingly turning more to robotics and artificial intelligence (enter self-driving tractors). Michelle Cheng, Quartz, 13 Jan. 2022 No one doubts, however, that Mr. Putin could extract a similar request from Belarus dictator Alexander Lukashenko, especially given the extensive Minsk-Moscow military relationship. John Bolton, WSJ, 9 Jan. 2022 Scottish officials regularly used such torture methods as sleep deprivation, physical punishment and public humiliation to extract confessions. Nora Mcgreevy, Smithsonian Magazine, 6 Jan. 2022 While some factories refill the emptied soybean tanks with more water to extract more soy sauce, artisanal producers avoid doing this to give their soy sauce maximum umami flavor. Maggie Hiufu Wong, CNN, 4 Jan. 2022 One such physical attack involves placing wires that tap the connection between a TPM and other device components and extract the secrets that pass between the machines. Dan Goodin, Ars Technica, 4 Jan. 2022 The epistolary impulse, Tiller knows, often comes from a desire to correct or to confess, and to extract meaning from the mess of our days. Alejandro Chacoff, The New Yorker, 3 Jan. 2022 Researchers in Missouri separate the virus from larger particles of waste and extract its genetic material. NBC News, 3 Jan. 2022 To extract the useful minerals takes a lot of energy. New York Times, 31 Dec. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Shiseido applied this to the revamp of its classic Ultimune serum, infusing it with heartleaf extract, an herb believed to boost APJ expression. Maura Lynch, Allure, 15 Jan. 2022 Formulated with anti-inflammatory tea tree extract, this soothing sheet mask from TonyMoly is another excellent option for those who have combination, oily or acne-prone skin. Noma Nazish, Forbes, 27 Dec. 2021 The brewery is back with its holiday ale, which is brewed with pure vanilla extract, cinnamon and honey. Marc Bona, cleveland, 9 Dec. 2021 The fan-favorite lip product is also formulated with green tea extract, which helps repair damage and reduce irritation, and offers SPF 25 to protect from the sun. Health.com, 9 Dec. 2021 Hello, Rénergie Lift Multi-Action Ultra Day Cream with SPF 30, which is turbo-charged with linseed extract, containing peptides, and helps to visibly lift and firm skin, while also reducing the appearance of dark spots. Natasha Silva-jelly, Harper's BAZAAR, 12 Nov. 2021 But that is not unusual for Morkert, who serves 75 different flavors of ground coffee, flavored with extract during the tumbling and drying process, meaning no sugar is used. Steve Lord, chicagotribune.com, 25 Oct. 2021 This soothing mask reduces skin redness and itchiness while calming and soothing the skin with a lipo-peptide blend and licorice extract. Erica Metzger, Better Homes & Gardens, 28 Sep. 2021 Among them is Estēe Lauder's moringa extract, which kickstarts cell renewal and acts as a solution to fine lines and wrinkles. Anthea Levi, Health.com, 17 Nov. 2021

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

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for extract

Verb

Middle English, from Latin extractus, past participle of extrahere, from ex- + trahere to draw

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Time Traveler for extract

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near extract

extracranial

extract

extraction

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Statistics for extract

Last Updated

18 Jan 2022

Cite this Entry

“Extract.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/extract. Accessed 24 Jan. 2022.

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More Definitions for extract

extract

verb

English Language Learners Definition of extract

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to remove (something) by pulling it out or cutting it out
: to get (information, a response, etc.) from someone who does not want to give it
: to get (something, such as information) from something

extract

noun

English Language Learners Definition of extract (Entry 2 of 2)

: a substance that you get from something by using a machine or chemicals
: a short piece of writing that is taken from a longer work (such as a book)

extract

verb
ex·​tract | \ ik-ˈstrakt How to pronounce extract (audio) \
extracted; extracting

Kids Definition of extract

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to remove by pulling extract a tooth
2 : to get out by pressing, distilling, or by a chemical process extract juice
3 : to choose and take out for separate use He extracted a few lines from a poem.

extract

noun
ex·​tract | \ ˈek-ˌstrakt How to pronounce extract (audio) \

Kids Definition of extract (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a selection from a writing
2 : a product obtained by pressing, distilling, or by a chemical process vanilla extract

extract

transitive verb
ex·​tract | \ ik-ˈstrakt How to pronounce extract (audio) \

Medical Definition of extract

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to pull or take out forcibly extracted a wisdom tooth
2 : to withdraw (as the medicinally active components of a plant or animal tissue) by physical or chemical process also : to treat with a solvent so as to remove a soluble substance

Other Words from extract

extractability \ ik-​ˌstrak-​tə-​ˈbil-​ət-​ē, (ˌ)ek-​ How to pronounce extract (audio) \ noun, plural extractabilities
extractable also extractible \ ik-​ˈstrak-​tə-​bəl, ˈek-​ˌ How to pronounce extract (audio) \ adjective

extract

noun
ex·​tract | \ ˈek-ˌstrakt How to pronounce extract (audio) \

Medical Definition of extract (Entry 2 of 2)

: something prepared by extracting especially : a medicinally active pharmaceutical solution

extract

noun
ex·​tract | \ ˈek-ˌstrakt How to pronounce extract (audio) \

Legal Definition of extract

: a certified copy of a document that forms part of or is preserved in a public record

More from Merriam-Webster on extract

Nglish: Translation of extract for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of extract for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about extract

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