Definition of interpolate
1a : to alter or corrupt (something, such as a text) by inserting new or foreign matterb : to insert (words) into a text or into a conversation
2 : to insert between other things or parts : intercalate
3 : to estimate values of (data or a function) between two known values
: to make insertions (as of estimated values)
interpolationplay \in-ˌtər-pə-ˈlā-shən\ noun
interpolativeplay \in-ˈtər-pə-ˌlā-tiv\ adjective
interpolatorplay \in-ˈtər-pə-ˌlā-tər\ noun
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Examples of interpolate in a Sentence
He smoothly interpolates fragments from other songs into his own.
He interpolated a very critical comment in the discussion.
Recent Examples of interpolate from the Web
Laine Rettmer supplied straightforward, unsubtle, direction, and interpolated some silent characters, including a nervous new witch, subject to fits, both on the heath and later while serving dinner at the Macbeths’ place.
The new book, like its predecessor, has a format that’s familiar in contemporary nonfiction: exemplary tales interpolated with a little social and cognitive science.
How: Every three minutes, locations of flight routes were transmitted to creator Aaron Koblin, who interpolated those values to create an animation of where every plane was flying.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'interpolate'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
Interpolate comes from Latin interpolare, a verb with various meanings, among them "to refurbish," "to alter," and "to falsify." Interpolate entered English in the 17th century and was applied early on to the alteration (and in many cases corruption) of texts by insertion of additional material. Modern use of interpolate still sometimes suggests the insertion of something extraneous or spurious, as in "she interpolated her own comments into the report."
Origin and Etymology of interpolate
Latin interpolatus, past participle of interpolare to refurbish, alter, interpolate, from inter- + -polare (from polire to polish)
First Known Use: 1612
Synonym Discussion of interpolate
INTERPOLATE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of interpolate for English Language Learners
: to put (something) between other things or parts; especially : to put (words) into a piece of writing or a conversation
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