Definition of militate
: to have weight or effect his boyish appearance militated against his getting an early promotion
Is mitigate against correct?
Mitigate is sometimes used as an intransitive (followed by against) where militate might be expected. Even though Faulkner used it some intangible and invisible social force that mitigates against him — William Faulkner and one critic thinks it should be called an American idiom, it is usually considered a mistake.
Recent Examples of militate from the Web
The left should militate against any creeping conspiracy-mongering among its ranks, even if the problem pales in comparison to the psychosis of practically the entire right-wing media ecosystem.
In other words, the Saudis’ threat perceptions militate against too much action.
A factor militating against this possibility is the NCAA selection committee’s emphasis on strength of schedule.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'militate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of militate
Latin militatus, past participle of militare to engage in warfare, from milit-, miles
First Known Use: 1598See Words from the same year
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