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)

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Other Words from extract

Verb

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

Synonyms for extract

Synonyms: Verb

corkscrew, prize, pry, pull, root (out), tear (out), uproot, wrest, wring, yank

Synonyms: Noun

excerpt, passage

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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

The popularity of cannabidiol, which can be extracted from marijuana or hemp — two different varieties of the cannabis plant — has prompted questions and confusion from consumers who want to make sure their products are safe, legal, and reliable. Felicia Gans, BostonGlobe.com, "Massachusetts says hemp-derived CBD is illegal — but CBD stores are still everywhere," 1 July 2019 Flow has added capabilities that include extracting meaningful data from paper documents that have been scanned. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, "Microsoft adds AI capabilities to PowerApps and Flow to automate business tasks," 10 June 2019 Other organizations possess legitimate techniques for extracting medically valid data from a single drop of blood. Letters To The Editor, The Mercury News, "Letter: Theranos compromised an entire technology segment," 5 June 2019 As public outcry mounts over companies like Facebook collecting and selling user information, the new proposal would prime courts and legislatures to give businesses even more power to extract data from unwitting consumers. Ian Macdougall, ProPublica, "Soon You May Not Even Have to Click on a Website Contract to Be Bound by Its Terms," 20 May 2019 Van Leeuwen imagines that protein could be extracted out of seaweed and used in its pure form, similar to the way soy is used now. Marta Zaraska, Discover Magazine, "Raising the Steaks: How One City in the Netherlands Wants to Feed the World," 13 Mar. 2019 Now, Google+ is finally winding down, with a 10-month pathway to complete shutdown in order to allow what few users are left to transition to a new service or extract their data before the network is fully transitioned into an enterprise product. Eric Limer, Popular Mechanics, "Google+ Completely Implodes Under Privacy Breach," 8 Oct. 2018 Recent work by Jensen, Payne and Ranganathan has shown how the properties of those equations can be extracted through a game called chip firing. Quanta Magazine, "Tinkertoy Models Produce New Geometric Insights," 5 Sep. 2018 Waters in the cave must recede to safe levels before the boys can be safely extracted, experts say. Author: Shibani Mahtani, Anchorage Daily News, "Rescue of Thai youth soccer team trapped in cave could take months, warn officials," 3 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

At StemGenex, as at many other firms offering purported stem cell treatments, clinicians removed fat from customers’ bodies via liposuction, and then claimed to extract stem cells from the extract for reinjection into the subjects’ bodies. Michael Hiltzik, latimes.com, "Judge approves class action case against clinic peddling unproven stem cell therapy," 1 July 2019 The hemp extract is finding its way into everything from food to deodorant and pet treats. Riley Murdock, azcentral, "As CBD shops explode in popularity, Arizona begins growing its own hemp crops," 13 June 2019 When the extract is used to fight black mold, the acids continue penetrating growth and prevent mold spores from returning. Cate Geiger, Country Living, "How to Get Rid of Black Mold Naturally," 23 May 2019 Its other two main ingredients are a local anaesthetic extract from the plant acmella oleracea and hyaluron that provides hydration to the skin. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Kate Middleton Reportedly Swears by a $64 Natural Anti-Wrinkle Gel Called Biotulin," 2 Feb. 2019 In May, Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt approved a bill to establish labeling requirements for CBD and hemp extracts. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "CBD is still illegal in the US. So why is it everywhere?," 24 June 2019 For the experiment, Dunn decided to move from extract to all-grain brewing, a switch akin to making a meal from scratch instead of using prepackaged ingredients. Emma Simmons, al.com, "Local homebrew clubs bring community to beer lovers," 18 June 2019 Kratom, which is derived from the leaves of a tree that grows in southeast Asia, often is used in the form of an extract or a pill. John Aguilar, The Denver Post, "Castle Rock bans underage sales of kratom, the controversial herbal extract," 6 June 2019 This could also be attributed to the inclusion of Kakadu plum extract, a popular natural ingredient that’s rich in vitamin C and nourishes skin. Glamour, "Herbivore’s Prism Glow Potion Gives You Radiant Skin Like None Other," 29 Mar. 2019

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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Statistics for extract

Last Updated

11 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for extract

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

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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 extractability (audio) \ noun, plural extractabilities
extractable also extractible \ ik-​ˈstrak-​tə-​bəl, ˈek-​ˌ How to pronounce extractible (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

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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

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Comments on extract

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