lev·​i·​tate | \ ˈle-və-ˌtāt How to pronounce levitate (audio) \
levitated; levitating

Definition of levitate

intransitive verb

: to rise or float in or as if in the air especially in seeming defiance of gravitation

transitive verb

: to cause to levitate

Examples of levitate in a Sentence

The woman levitated above the stage. The magician claimed he could levitate a car.
Recent Examples on the Web Fluffy white tigers would levitate in the air, and elephants would disappear right in front of your eyes. Rick Helfenbein, Forbes, "When China Rings The Bell In Xinjiang - Retail Crumbles," 12 Apr. 2021 Kathleen Lutz would sometimes levitate above the bed or would temporarily look like a 90-year-old woman. Washington Post, "Ronald DeFeo Jr., whose slayings of family members launched ‘The Amityville Horror,’ dies at 69," 17 Mar. 2021 Roichman studies optical trapping and has used lasers to levitate dust particles. Max G. Levy, Wired, "Researchers Levitated a Small Tray Using Nothing but Light," 12 Feb. 2021 The toy, which uses magnetic power to levitate 2½ inches off the base, is currently valued at more than $9,000 in a charity auction ending Friday. Mike Snider, USA TODAY, "Disney to close at least 60 Disney Stores in US and Canada, as shopping shifts to online," 3 Mar. 2021 Typically, levitation techniques make use of electromagnetism; magnetic forces have even been used to levitate frogs. Josh Howgego, Scientific American, "Sound Waves Levitate and Move Objects," 15 July 2013 From the start, irrational events ensue: a barn bursts into flame, a jug crashes to the floor, ghostly presences materialize, people levitate. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, "The Drenching Richness of Andrei Tarkovsky," 8 Feb. 2021 In their lavish shows, an elephant would vanish, a white tiger would turn into a beautiful woman, a tiger would appear to levitate over the audience and Mr. Horn would become a snake. New York Times, "Siegfried Fischbacher, Magician of Siegfried & Roy, Dies at 81," 14 Jan. 2021 Women were magically transformed into tigers, lions appeared to levitate above the stage, an elephant vanished before the audience’s eyes. Washington Post, "Siegfried Fischbacher, half of large-animal magic team Siegfried & Roy, dies at 81," 14 Jan. 2021

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

1673, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for levitate


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Time Traveler for levitate

Time Traveler

The first known use of levitate was in 1673

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Statistics for levitate

Last Updated

18 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Levitate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/levitate. Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for levitate



English Language Learners Definition of levitate

: to rise or make (something) rise into the air in a way that appears to be magical


lev·​i·​tate | \ ˈle-və-ˌtāt How to pronounce levitate (audio) \
levitated; levitating

Kids Definition of levitate

: to rise or make rise up in the air

Comments on levitate

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