intransitive verb
re·​cal·​ci·​trate | \ -sə‧ˌtrāt, usually -āt+V\

Definition of recalcitrate

1 : to kick back
2 : to protest or resist vigorously : show stubborn opposition

Love words?

You must — there are over 200,000 words in our free online dictionary, but you are looking for one that’s only in the Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary.

Start your free trial today and get unlimited access to America's largest dictionary, with:

  • More than 250,000 words that aren't in our free dictionary
  • Expanded definitions, etymologies, and usage notes
  • Advanced search features
  • Ad free!

History and Etymology for recalcitrate

Latin recalcitratus, past participle of recalcitrare to kick back

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about recalcitrate

Share recalcitrate

Statistics for recalcitrate

Look-up Popularity

Comments on recalcitrate

What made you want to look up recalcitrate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


the way words of a language are spelled

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A Green Quiz

  • shamrock
  • What is the best definition of green-eyed monster?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

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