manipulate

verb
ma·​nip·​u·​late | \ mə-ˈni-pyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \
manipulated; manipulating

Definition of manipulate

transitive verb

1 : to treat or operate with or as if with the hands or by mechanical means especially in a skillful manner manipulate a pencil manipulate a machine
2a : to manage or utilize skillfully quantify our data and manipulate it statistically— S. L. Payne
b : to control or play upon by artful, unfair, or insidious means especially to one's own advantage being used and manipulated by the knowing men around himNew Republic
3 : to change by artful or unfair means so as to serve one's purpose : doctor suspected that the police reports were manipulated— Evelyn G. Cruickshanks

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Other Words from manipulate

manipulatable \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​ˌlā-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ adjective
manipulation \ mə-​ˌni-​pyə-​ˈlā-​shən How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ noun
manipulator \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​ˌlā-​tər How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ noun
manipulatory \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​lə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for manipulate

Synonyms

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Examples of manipulate in a Sentence

The baby is learning to manipulate blocks. The mechanical arms are manipulated by a computer. The doctor manipulated my back. The program was designed to organize and manipulate large amounts of data. He's always been good at manipulating numbers in his head. As part of the experiment, students manipulated light and temperature to see how it affected the plants. She knows how to manipulate her parents to get what she wants. He felt that he had been manipulated by the people he trusted most. The editorial was a blatant attempt to manipulate public opinion. He's accused of trying to manipulate the price of the stock.
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Recent Examples on the Web Jones is a pinpoint thrower who can manipulate the pocket and find targets down the field. BostonGlobe.com, "A closer look at new Patriots quarterback Mac Jones, who led Alabama to the national championship," 30 Apr. 2021 Milana is a Heartrender, a Grisha who can manipulate people to tell the truth. Olivia Truffaut-wong, refinery29.com, "R29 Recaps: Every Episode From Shadow and Bone Season 1," 27 Apr. 2021 And while magicians may know how to manipulate gaze to enhance their illusions, the illusion of gaze as a physical force is magic enough. Robert Martone, Scientific American, "When Our Gaze Is a Physical Force," 29 Dec. 2020 And even further back, in 1984, the Nobel in medicine went to a team for theories on how to manipulate the immune system using something called monoclonal antibodies. Seth Borenstein, Star Tribune, "Nobel Prizes and COVID-19: Slow, basic science may pay off," 3 Oct. 2020 BaFin, the Securities and Exchange Commission of Germany, began investigating claims that the revelations were part of a scheme by short sellers looking to manipulate Wirecard’s share price. Adrian Daub, The New Republic, "The Weird, Extremely German Origins of the Wirecard Scandal," 21 Apr. 2021 Very low marks go to those who want to use policy to manipulate public opinion. Bill Conerly, Forbes, "Credibility: Business Lessons From FDA And CDC," 20 Apr. 2021 For many years, the Kremlin has tried to manage information and manipulate the public mood by controlling television and other mainstream media. Kenneth Roth, CNN, "The last chance to save Alexey Navalny," 19 Apr. 2021 But when the company decides to manipulate his mind and memories, Ray must embark on a mission to find out what’s real and what’s not. Ed Stockly, Los Angeles Times, "Movies on TV this week ‘Pulp Fiction’ on BBC America and IFC," 9 Apr. 2021

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

1834, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for manipulate

back-formation from manipulation, from French, from manipuler to handle an apparatus in chemistry, ultimately from Latin manipulus

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Time Traveler for manipulate

Time Traveler

The first known use of manipulate was in 1834

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Statistics for manipulate

Last Updated

6 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Manipulate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/manipulate. Accessed 9 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for manipulate

manipulate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of manipulate

: to move or control (something) with your hands or by using a machine
medical : to move (muscles and bones) with your hands as a form of treatment
: to use or change (numbers, information, etc.) in a skillful way or for a particular purpose

manipulate

verb
ma·​nip·​u·​late | \ mə-ˈni-pyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \
manipulated; manipulating

Kids Definition of manipulate

1 : to operate, use, or move with the hands or by mechanical means She learned to manipulate the levers of the machine.
2 : to manage skillfully and especially with intent to deceive The candidates tried to manipulate public opinion.

manipulate

transitive verb
ma·​nip·​u·​late | \ mə-ˈnip-yə-ˌlāt How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \
manipulated; manipulating

Medical Definition of manipulate

1 : to treat or operate with the hands or by mechanical means especially in a skillful manner manipulate the fragments of a broken bone into correct position
2a : to manage or utilize skillfully
b : to control or play upon by artful, unfair, or insidious means especially to one's own advantage

Other Words from manipulate

manipulative \ -​ˈnip-​yə-​ˌlāt-​iv How to pronounce manipulate (audio) , -​lət-​ How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ adjective
manipulativeness noun

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manipulate

transitive verb
ma·​nip·​u·​late | \ mə-ˈni-pyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \
manipulated; manipulating

Legal Definition of manipulate

: to change by artful or unfair means so as to serve one's purpose specifically : to affect (the price of securities) artificially in order to deceive or mislead investors

Other Words from manipulate

manipulable \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​lə-​bəl How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ adjective
manipulation \ mə-​ˌni-​pyə-​ˈlā-​shən How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ noun
manipulative \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​ˌlā-​tiv, -​lə-​tiv How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ adjective
manipulatively adverb
manipulativeness noun
manipulator \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​ˌlā-​tər How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ noun
manipulatory \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​lə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce manipulate (audio) \ adjective

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Comments on manipulate

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