re·​cu·​per·​ate | \ri-ˈkü-pə-ˌrāt, -ˈkyü-\
recuperated; recuperating

Definition of recuperate 

transitive verb

1 : to get back : regain

2 : to bring back into use or currency : revive recuperate old traditions

intransitive verb

: to regain a former state or condition especially : to recover health or strength

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Other Words from recuperate

recuperation \ri-​ˌkü-​pə-​ˈrā-​shən, -​ˌkyü-​ \ noun

Synonyms for recuperate


come back, convalesce, gain, heal, mend, pull round [chiefly British], rally, recoup, recover, snap back

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Examples of recuperate in a Sentence

She took a day off to recuperate. half the office was out today, many employees being sick or recuperating from the flu

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So at the urging of his beloved cousins, Toby moves himself and his angelic girlfriend into Hugo’s house to recuperate and help tend to the ailing Hugo — only to find that Hugo’s house is harboring dark secrets. Constance Grady, Vox, "Crime novelist Tana French is at her creepy, thoughtful best with The Witch Elm," 12 Oct. 2018 Sam Levy would recuperate from the gassing and his wounds – shrapnel in his back, arm and hand – in a French hospital. Erik Brady, USA TODAY, "How old is former NFL coach Marv Levy? His dad was wounded in World War I," 27 June 2018 In Sweden, the health of the child, mother and family are held in such high regard that parents are given 16 months off from work—paid—to recuperate from childbirth and bond with their children. WSJ, "Sweden Is the World’s Finest Home for Families," 15 July 2018 The sick-time benefit was designed to promote a healthy workplace by encouraging employees to stay home and recuperate rather than come to work and make others sick., "Should Massachusetts cap sick time for state workers?," 29 June 2018 The snowy owl is now beating the heat and recuperating at the bird rescue organization, which on Tuesday was celebrating the 100th anniversary of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, a conservation law that protects birds across the country. Katie Honan, WSJ, "Snowy Owl Makes Unexpected Visit at New York City Jail," 4 July 2018 Across town at Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center, their mother, Miada Jasim, 37, was recuperating after being stabbed in the neck. Maria L. La Ganga And Sven Berg, idahostatesman, "A speeding ambulance. Asking how a toddler died. 2 boys recall Boise's mass stabbing," 2 July 2018 Erick Jose, recuperating at the same respite center, said Border Patrol agents told him his daughter would be taken from him. Michael E. Miller, Washington Post, "Family separations could double, says Border Patrol chief in Rio Grande Valley," 16 June 2018 While your legs and lungs recuperate at the summit, your peepers will be rewarded with a 360-degree vista of the L.A. basin, the Santa Monicas, the San Gabriels, and Palos Verdes. Brittany Martin, Los Angeles Magazine, "Where to Find L.A.’s Most Instagrammable Views," 8 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'recuperate.' 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 recuperate

1542, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for recuperate

Latin recuperatus, past participle of recuperare — more at recover

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Statistics for recuperate

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

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Time Traveler for recuperate

The first known use of recuperate was in 1542

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More Definitions for recuperate



English Language Learners Definition of recuperate

: to return to normal health or strength after being sick, injured, etc.

: to get back (money that has been spent, invested, lost, etc.)


re·​cu·​per·​ate | \ri-ˈkü-pə-ˌrāt, -ˈkyü-\
recuperated; recuperating

Kids Definition of recuperate

: to regain health or strength


re·​cu·​per·​ate | \ri-ˈk(y)ü-pə-ˌrāt \
recuperated; recuperating

Medical Definition of recuperate 

transitive verb

: to get back or recover recuperating health and strength after pneumonia

intransitive verb

: to recover health or strength time to recuperate after major surgery

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