galvanize

verb

gal·​va·​nize ˈgal-və-ˌnīz How to pronounce galvanize (audio)
galvanized; galvanizing

transitive verb

1
a
: to subject to the action of an electric current especially for the purpose of stimulating physiologically
galvanize a muscle
b
: to stimulate or excite as if by an electric shock
an issue that would galvanize public opinion
2
: to coat (iron or steel) with zinc
especially : to immerse in molten zinc to produce a coating of zinc-iron alloy

intransitive verb

: to react as if stimulated by an electric shock
they galvanized into action
galvanization noun
galvanizer noun

Did you know?

Luigi Galvani was an Italian physician and physicist who, in the 1770s, studied the electrical nature of nerve impulses by applying electrical stimulation to frogs' leg muscles, causing them to contract. Although Galvani's theory that animal tissue contained an innate electrical impulse was disproven, the French word galvanisme came to describe a current of electricity especially when produced by chemical action. English borrowed the word as galvanism, and shortly after the verb galvanize came to life.

Examples of galvanize in a Sentence

The group is hoping to galvanize public opinion against the proposed law. The website has galvanized support for the project. a factory where steel is galvanized
Recent Examples on the Web The substitution seemed to galvanize the English, with the team playing with more verve and pace. Ben Morse, CNN, 14 July 2024 The mood of the film is wistful, a little sad, but ultimately quietly galvanizing, thanks in large part to the actors: Palmi Kormákur plays the young Kristofer as guileless but not clueless, feeling his way along as young people do. Stephanie Zacharek, TIME, 12 July 2024 Washington — On the heels of the Supreme Court's conclusion of its momentous term earlier this month, progressive groups are pouring millions into offensives that seek to make the nation's highest court a galvanizing issue for voters in November. Melissa Quinn, CBS News, 12 July 2024 The event aims to convene and galvanize franchise experts and business leaders to empower current franchisees and encourage prospective founders. Jasmine Browley, Essence, 10 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for galvanize 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'galvanize.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

borrowed from French galvaniser, from Luigi galvani (who conducted pioneering experiments in bioelectricity) + -iser -ize

Note: See note at galvanism.

First Known Use

1802, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of galvanize was in 1802

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Dictionary Entries Near galvanize

Cite this Entry

“Galvanize.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/galvanize. Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

galvanize

verb
gal·​va·​nize ˈgal-və-ˌnīz How to pronounce galvanize (audio)
galvanized; galvanizing
1
a
: to subject to the action of an electric current
galvanize a muscle
b
: to cause excitement or concern and a desire for action in
an issue that galvanized the public
2
: to coat (as iron) with zinc for protection
galvanization noun

Medical Definition

galvanize

transitive verb
gal·​va·​nize
variants or British galvanise
galvanized or British galvanised; galvanizing or British galvanising
: to subject to the action of an electric current especially for the purpose of stimulating physiologically
galvanize a muscle

More from Merriam-Webster on galvanize

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