facilitate

verb
fa·​cil·​i·​tate | \ fə-ˈsi-lə-ˌtāt How to pronounce facilitate (audio) \
facilitated; facilitating

Definition of facilitate

transitive verb

: to make easier : help bring about facilitate growth

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Other Words from facilitate

facilitative \ fə-​ˈsi-​lə-​ˌtā-​tiv How to pronounce facilitative (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for facilitate

Synonyms

ease, grease, loosen (up), smooth, unclog

Antonyms

complicate

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Did You Know?

As with so many English words, it's easy to find a Latin origin for facilitate. It traces back to the Latin adjective facilis, meaning "easy." Other descendants of facilis in English include facile ("easy to do"), facility ("the quality of being easily performed"), faculty ("ability"), and difficult (from dis- plus facilis, which equals "not easy"). Facilis in turn comes from facere, a Latin verb meaning "to make or do." Facere has played a role in the development of dozens of English words, ranging from affect to surfeit.

Examples of facilitate in a Sentence

The strength of the inner identities that black women forged and nurtured during slavery facilitated the transition to freedom. — Darlene Clark Hine, Lure and Loathing, 1993 What physical events might have facilitated the evolution of macroscopic animals? — Andrew H. Knoll, Scientific American, October 1991 Nothing so facilitates writing as actually having something to say, yet the conditions under which, and the tools with which, writing is done can contribute to facility—or to difficulty. — Joseph Epstein, The Middle of My Tether, 1983 Cutting taxes may facilitate economic recovery. Her rise to power was facilitated by her influential friends. The moderator's role is to facilitate the discussion by asking appropriate questions.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Jonathan Christodoro, a former Icahn Capital LP managing director who sat on Lyft’s board until last month, facilitated the sale of Mr. Icahn’s stake, worth roughly $550 million at the IPO price, some of the people said. Corrie Driebusch, WSJ, "Carl Icahn Sold Lyft Stake to George Soros Prior to Initial Public Offering," 3 Apr. 2019 Since taking power last year, Moon has sought to facilitate dialogue between Trump and Kim to avoid the possibility of a devastating military conflict on the Korean Peninsula. Fortune, "U.S. Delegation and North Korean Officials Talking in Preparation for Summit," 27 May 2018 Since taking power last year, Moon has sought to facilitate dialogue between Trump and Kim to avoid the possibility of a devastating military conflict on the Korean Peninsula. Heesu Lee, Bloomberg.com, "Kim, Moon Discuss How to Revive Trump Summit in Surprise Meeting," 26 May 2018 The blades are ultra-thin and remarkably sturdy, ensuring that each slice, chop, and dice facilitate laser precision. Popular Mechanics, "These Laser-Sharp Japanese Knives Are a Kitchen Staple," 14 Mar. 2019 These people may or may not have training to facilitate this kind of gathering. Brittany Risher, SELF, "How to Know If Group Therapy Might Be Right for You," 14 Feb. 2019 But the most important function of having authors is to facilitate responsible publishing. Ars Technica, "The Journal of Controversial Ideas—academic freedom sans responsibility is reckless," 25 Nov. 2018 And along with providing border security, our job is to facilitate lawful trade and travel. Fox News, "Ken Starr: Impeachment is hell," 11 Sep. 2018 Our role is to help facilitate and support local efforts; design a network of outdoor environments that is specific to the needs and vision of that community; and help find funding. Drew Harris, Philly.com, "Let's promote health and green space one empty lot at a time," 29 June 2018

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

1599, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for facilitate

probably from Middle French faciliter "to make easy" (borrowed from Italian facilitare, verbal derivative of facilità facility) + -ate entry 4

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Statistics for facilitate

Last Updated

16 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for facilitate

The first known use of facilitate was in 1599

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More Definitions for facilitate

facilitate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of facilitate

formal
: to make (something) easier : to help cause (something)
: to help (something) run more smoothly and effectively

facilitate

verb
fa·​cil·​i·​tate | \ fə-ˈsi-lə-ˌtāt How to pronounce facilitate (audio) \
facilitated; facilitating

Kids Definition of facilitate

: to make easier

facilitate

transitive verb
fa·​cil·​i·​tate | \ fə-ˈsil-ə-ˌtāt How to pronounce facilitate (audio) \
facilitated; facilitating

Medical Definition of facilitate

: to increase the likelihood, strength, or effectiveness of (as behavior or a response) reflexes can be facilitated or inhibited also : to lower the threshold for transmission of (an impulse)

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facilitate

transitive verb
fa·​cil·​i·​tate | \ fə-ˈsi-lə-ˌtāt How to pronounce facilitate (audio) \
facilitated; facilitating

Legal Definition of facilitate

: to make easier : help bring about a vehicle used to facilitate commission of the offense

Other Words from facilitate

facilitation \ fə-​ˌsi-​lə-​ˈtā-​shən How to pronounce facilitation (audio) \ noun

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Comments on facilitate

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not to be persuaded, moved, or stopped

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