militate

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verb mil·i·tate \ˈmi-lə-ˌtāt\

Definition of militate

militated

militating

  1. intransitive verb
  2. :  to have weight or effect <his boyish appearance militated against his getting an early promotion>

Usage Discussion of militate

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.

Origin and Etymology of militate

Latin militatus, past participle of militare to engage in warfare, from milit-, miles


First Known Use: circa 1600



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a harsh rebuke

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