terminate

verb
ter·​mi·​nate | \ ˈtər-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce terminate (audio) \
terminated; terminating

Definition of terminate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to form an ending
2 : to come to an end in time
3 : to extend only to a limit (such as a point or line) especially : to reach a terminus

transitive verb

1a : to bring to an end : close terminate a marriage by divorce terminate a transmission line
b : to discontinue the employment of workers terminated because of slow business
c : to form the conclusion of review questions terminate each chapter
2 : to serve as an ending, limit, or boundary of

terminate

adjective
ter·​mi·​nate | \ ˈtər-mə-nət How to pronounce terminate (audio) \

Definition of terminate (Entry 2 of 2)

: coming to an end or capable of ending

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Synonyms & Antonyms for terminate

Synonyms: Verb

close, close out, complete, conclude, end, finish, round (off or out), wind up, wrap up

Antonyms: Verb

begin, commence, inaugurate, open, start

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Choose the Right Synonym for terminate

Verb

close, end, conclude, finish, complete, terminate mean to bring or come to a stopping point or limit. close usually implies that something has been in some way open as well as unfinished. close a debate end conveys a strong sense of finality. ended his life conclude may imply a formal closing (as of a meeting). the service concluded with a blessing finish may stress completion of a final step in a process. after it is painted, the house will be finished complete implies the removal of all deficiencies or a successful finishing of what has been undertaken. the resolving of this last issue completes the agreement terminate implies the setting of a limit in time or space. your employment terminates after three months

Examples of terminate in a Sentence

Verb

The branches of that tree terminate in flower clusters. The rail line terminates in Boston. You have to terminate the program before the computer will shut down properly. His contract was terminated last month. He was terminated last month. Plans are being made to terminate unproductive employees.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The landlord can treat the lease ad terminated and use the property for himself or a family member. Gary Singer, sun-sentinel.com, "Ask a real estate pro: Do I have to pay landlord for leaving rental before lease was up?," 27 June 2019 The chief of the Massachusetts’ Registry of Motor Vehicles chief has resigned over the case, admitting the agency erred in not terminating Zhukovskyy’s license after the May 11 drunken driving arrest in Connecticut. Andrew Martinez, The Mercury News, "Driver accused of killing motorcyclists has shocking road history; DMV chief resigns over case," 26 June 2019 In 1957, Kameny was fired from his government astronomy job for being gay, making him one of the thousands of federal workers terminated for their sexuality under Dwight Eisenhower’s Executive Order 10450. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Tracing the Internal Queer Revolution," 26 June 2019 The work took longer than expected because of difficulties encountered with the preparation of the pathway space, resulting in the city terminating the original contractor hired to do that part of the project. Steve Dreyer, Pomerado News, "Digging to resume along Espola Road," 25 June 2019 Still, these innovations seemingly came to an end as the Ediacaran terminated in yet another global glaciation. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Physics indicates some of Earth’s earliest animals helped each other feed," 21 June 2019 What’s left is a nonflammable gas that is then transported to market by a 425-mile pipeline that terminates in Bushton, Kan. Stoll says Cliffside has a soul. Laura Garcia, ExpressNews.com, "Global helium market faces more uncertainty as government prepares to sell its stockpile stored in Texas," 21 June 2019 By early 2018, the agency recommended terminating Matias’ parental rights and awarding guardianship to the Paleniks. Melissa Sanchez, ProPublica, "For generations, Illinois’ child welfare agency has failed to adequately serve Spanish-speaking families with children in its care.," 20 June 2019 These Terms of Service are effective unless and until terminated by either you or us. nybooks.com, "Terms of service," 17 June 2019

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

Verb

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

Adjective

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for terminate

Adjective

Middle English, from Latin terminatus, past participle of terminare, from terminus

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Statistics for terminate

Last Updated

5 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for terminate

The first known use of terminate was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for terminate

terminate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of terminate

formal
: to end in a particular way or at a particular place
: to cause (something) to end
US : to take a job away from (someone)

terminate

verb
ter·​mi·​nate | \ ˈtər-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce terminate (audio) \
terminated; terminating

Kids Definition of terminate

: end entry 2, close I terminated my membership.

terminate

verb
ter·​mi·​nate | \ ˈtər-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce terminate (audio) \
terminated; terminating

Legal Definition of terminate

intransitive verb

: to come to an end in time or effect

transitive verb

1 : to bring to a definite end especially before a natural conclusion terminate a contract — compare cancel, rescind
2 : to discontinue the employment of

Other Words from terminate

termination \ ˌtər-​mə-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce termination (audio) \ noun

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Comments on terminate

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