na·​tion·​al·​ize | \ ˈnash-nə-ˌlīz How to pronounce nationalize (audio) , ˈna-shə-nə-ˌlīz \
nationalized; nationalizing

Definition of nationalize

transitive verb

1 : to give a national character to
2 : to invest control or ownership of in the national government

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from nationalize

nationalization \ ˌnash-​nə-​lə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce nationalize (audio) , ˌna-​shə-​nə-​lə-​ \ noun
nationalizer \ ˈnash-​nə-​ˌlī-​zər How to pronounce nationalize (audio) , ˌna-​shə-​nə-​ˌlī-​zər \ noun

Examples of nationalize in a Sentence

The government nationalized the health-care system in the mid-1950s. nationalizing the country's oil supply
Recent Examples on the Web Fujimori has been aided by Castillo’s erratic campaign, which has zigzagged between threats to nationalize large chunks of the economy and promises to respect property rights. Washington Post, 6 June 2021 His proposals to nationalize broad sectors of the economy have alarmed many in Peru, including business interests. Franklin BriceÑo And Regina Garcia Cano, Star Tribune, 18 Apr. 2021 Republicans say the measure would lead to more voter fraud and would nationalize the election process to favor Democratic victories. Susan Ferrechio, Washington Examiner, 3 Mar. 2021 The charismatic nationalist President Gamal Abdel Nasser opted to nationalize the Suez Canal Company’s holdings and Egyptian troops seized its facilities. Washington Post, 26 Mar. 2021 The non-specific endorsement came as pressure is increasing on Democrats to meet Republicans’ efforts to nationalize the recall effort. Tal Kopan, San Francisco Chronicle, 10 Mar. 2021 Billions of euros are being deployed to nationalize payrolls, suppress bankruptcies and avoid mass unemployment. New York Times, 17 Feb. 2021 This law required the U.S. government to nationalize the country’s silver mines and use the silver production to mint coins. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, 6 Feb. 2021 Much less clear is whether the college sports industry will nationalize safety reforms like those adopted by the NFL, which limits the number of full-contact practices per season. Alan Blinder, Star Tribune, 4 Feb. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'nationalize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of nationalize

1799, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About nationalize

Time Traveler for nationalize

Time Traveler

The first known use of nationalize was in 1799

See more words from the same year

Statistics for nationalize

Last Updated

9 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Nationalize.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for nationalize



English Language Learners Definition of nationalize

: to cause (something) to be under the control of a national government


na·​tion·​al·​ize | \ ˈna-shə-nə-ˌlīz How to pronounce nationalize (audio) \
nationalized; nationalizing

Kids Definition of nationalize

: to place under government control


transitive verb
na·​tion·​al·​ize | \ ˈna-shə-nə-ˌlīz How to pronounce nationalize (audio) \
nationalized; nationalizing

Legal Definition of nationalize

: to invest control or ownership of in the national government

More from Merriam-Webster on nationalize

Nglish: Translation of nationalize for Spanish Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Return of Name that Color!

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!