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 manipulatable (audio) \ adjective
manipulation \ mə-​ˌni-​pyə-​ˈlā-​shən How to pronounce manipulation (audio) \ noun
manipulator \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​ˌlā-​tər How to pronounce manipulator (audio) \ noun
manipulatory \ mə-​ˈni-​pyə-​lə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce manipulatory (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 Through it all, his parents manipulate each other and their children out of a fear of losing face within the community. Sarah Neilson, Washington Post, "Playwright David Adjmi’s stirring memoir, ‘Lot Six,’ explores the very meaning of identity," 30 June 2020 Natalie pointed out that Magda doesn't manipulate female characters in the show. Nick Romano, EW.com, "Penny Dreadful: City of Angels creator on confronting the horrors of our reality with the finale," 29 June 2020 The team’s idea was to use the layer-by-layer printing process to manipulate the temperatures each layer experienced, alternating softer, more flexible layers with layers hardened by that precipitation process. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "Can you 3D print Damascus steel? Pretty much, yeah," 24 June 2020 And then came the Cambridge Analytica scandal, when it was reported that the political consulting firm accessed data from 87 million Facebook profiles in order to manipulate voters into supporting Trump’s campaign. Eliza Huber, refinery29.com, "Levi’s Joins Patagonia & REI In Facebook Boycott," 22 June 2020 The two conservative lawmakers asked the office to look at how others, specifically the Chinese Communist Party, could manipulate the U.S. government through the program. Anna Giaritelli, Washington Examiner, "Jordan seeks investigation into Chinese Communist use of visa program to get members into US," 15 June 2020 Their scale and influence, and their ability to manipulate public opinion and shape markets, would permit them to reign unimpeded. Franklin Foer, The Atlantic, "Big Tech’s Pandemic Power Grab," 12 June 2020 Regardless, a man would only do this sort of ridiculous thing in order to manipulate and control you. Amy Dickinson, oregonlive, "Ask Amy: New back tattoo spells T-R-O-U-B-L-E," 10 June 2020 More than anything, this podcast is an exploration of the cultural value of popular music, and how intelligence agencies attempt to manipulate culture to achieve clandestine ends. The Editors, Outside Online, "Everything Our Editors Loved in May," 9 June 2020

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

4 Jul 2020

Cite this Entry

“Manipulate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/manipulate. Accessed 5 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for manipulate

manipulate

verb
How to pronounce manipulate (audio)

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

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Comments on manipulate

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