Definition of imprecate
: to invoke evil on : curse
: to utter curses
imprecate was our Word of the Day on 02/02/2017. Hear the podcast!
Examples of imprecate in a sentence
with her dying breath the witch imprecated the villagers for their relentless persecution of her
Did You Know?
It may surprise you to learn that a word that refers to wishing evil upon someone has its roots in praying, but "imprecate" ultimately derives from the Latin verb precari, meaning "to pray, ask, or entreat." "Precari" is also the ancestor of such English words as "deprecate" (which once meant "to pray against an evil," though that sense is now archaic), "precatory" ("expressing a wish") and even "pray" itself (which has deeper roots in the Latin noun for a request or entreaty, "prex").
Origin and Etymology of imprecate
Latin imprecatus, past participle of imprecari, from in- + precari to pray — more at pray
First Known Use: 1613
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