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

Bradley Roby shifted inside to nickel one week after the Texans terminated Aaron Colvin's $34 million contract. Aaron Wilson, Houston Chronicle, "Texans rookie Lonnie Johnson makes starting debut," 15 Sep. 2019 How to cope with being a lesser-known terminated employee. Rob Long, National Review, "FIREDCON 2019!," 12 Sep. 2019 The suit seeks a judge’s approval as a class action, to bring in anyone not of South Asian or Indian origin who applied for jobs at Happiest Minds in the U.S. and weren’t hired, or whom the company involuntarily terminated. Ethan Baron, The Mercury News, "H-1B: San Jose tech firm discriminated against non-Indians, favored visa holders, lawsuit claims," 9 Sep. 2019 The issue raises the specter of a problem on another public-private partnership less than a month after Denver International Airport terminated its $1.8 billion contract with Great Hall Partners for the troubled terminal renovation project. Jon Murray, The Denver Post, "Interstate 70 expansion in Denver faces likely delay, contractor says," 9 Sep. 2019 The Washington-to-Laurel route was finally opened in 1902, terminating at Main Street and Sixth Ave., but Laurel to Baltimore was never completed. Kevin Leonard, baltimoresun.com, "The dream of electric trains has origins in Laurel," 6 Sep. 2019 And Estefany Méndez saw her employment terminated by Univision because her DACA permit had lapsed before her renewal was approved. Julissa Arce, Time, "Two Years After DACA Was Rescinded, Hundreds of Thousands of Dreamers Remain in Limbo. Even the Supreme Court Can't Fix the Problem," 5 Sep. 2019 Police attempted to stop the vehicle, but a supervisor terminated the high-speed pursuit after a few blocks. Erik S. Hanley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "South Milwaukee police are searching for a man involved in an attempted motorcycle theft, crash," 4 Sep. 2019 Robin Swanson, a spokeswoman for Lara’s campaign, told the Union-Tribune by email Tuesday that the fundraising personnel with whom Lara’s campaign terminated its contract was Dan Weitzman. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Insurance commissioner halts campaign fundraising to rein in contributions from firms he regulates," 3 Sep. 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

11 Oct 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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