tolerate

verb
tol·​er·​ate | \ ˈtä-lə-ˌrāt How to pronounce tolerate (audio) \
tolerated; tolerating

Definition of tolerate

transitive verb

1a : to allow to be or to be done without prohibition, hindrance, or contradiction
b : to put up with learn to tolerate one another
2 : to endure or resist the action of (something, such as a drug or food) without serious side effects or discomfort : exhibit physiological tolerance for

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Other Words from tolerate

tolerative \ ˈtä-​lə-​ˌrā-​tiv How to pronounce tolerative (audio) \ adjective
tolerator \ ˈtä-​lə-​ˌrā-​tər How to pronounce tolerator (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for tolerate

Synonyms

Antonyms

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Choose the Right Synonym for tolerate

bear, suffer, endure, abide, tolerate, stand mean to put up with something trying or painful. bear usually implies the power to sustain without flinching or breaking. forced to bear a tragic loss suffer often suggests acceptance or passivity rather than courage or patience in bearing. suffering many insults endure implies continuing firm or resolute through trials and difficulties. endured years of rejection abide suggests acceptance without resistance or protest. cannot abide their rudeness tolerate suggests overcoming or successfully controlling an impulse to resist, avoid, or resent something injurious or distasteful. refused to tolerate such treatment stand emphasizes even more strongly the ability to bear without discomposure or flinching. unable to stand teasing

Examples of tolerate in a Sentence

Our teacher will not tolerate bad grammar. Racist or sexist behavior will not be tolerated. I can't tolerate that noise. The government cannot tolerate lawlessness. How can you tolerate such laziness? These plants tolerate drought well. I don't like my boss, but I tolerate him.
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Recent Examples on the Web But thanks to an abundance of grass shrimp treats, the cuttlefish eventually learn to tolerate their new accessories and watch the researchers’ feature films. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, "Scientists Velcroed 3-D Glasses to Cuttlefish to Study Their Depth Perception," 8 Jan. 2020 The problem led to months of going to doctors who were telling Chacon and her family that her pain couldn't be eliminated and just had to be tolerated. Werner Trieschmann, Arkansas Online, "Chanda Cashen Chacon," 29 Dec. 2019 Some people who would be able to tolerate 5 ounces of red wine might frequently have their sensitivities triggered by a generous glass. Claire Maldarelli, Popular Science, "Why does red wine make me feel sick?," 27 Dec. 2019 Williamson’s The Smallest Minority also looks at today’s America and finds a country where too many citizens are unwilling to tolerate differing opinions. Tevi Troy, National Review, "2019: A Year in Reading," 26 Dec. 2019 Thanks to a generation less apt to tolerate misogynistic tropes like damsels in distress, theatrical release romantic comedies have fallen more or less out of favor. Jessica Klein, Fortune, "‘Tis the Season for Holiday Movies—and Hallmark and Lifetime Aren’t Afraid of Netflix," 17 Dec. 2019 His government will not tolerate corruption, Rajapaksa said, noting the administration would be based on merit. Ruth Pollard, Bloomberg.com, "Sri Lanka’s New Strongman Promises ‘Tolerance’ For Minorities," 17 Nov. 2019 Even the few critics whom the regime tolerates have been treading carefully. Joshua Hammer, Town & Country, "The Runaway Princesses of Dubai," 11 Dec. 2019 Gun violence is not going to be tolerated in Madison. Greg Hanlon, PEOPLE.com, "'Baby Shark' Stuffed Toy Possibly Saves Wisc. Toddler’s Life After Stray Bullet Rips Through Wall," 28 Nov. 2019

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

1524, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for tolerate

Latin toleratus, past participle of tolerare to endure, put up with; akin to Old English tholian to bear, Latin tollere to lift up, latus carried (suppletive past participle of ferre), Greek tlēnai to bear

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Time Traveler for tolerate

Time Traveler

The first known use of tolerate was in 1524

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Statistics for tolerate

Last Updated

15 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“Tolerate.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tolerate?show=0&t=1390228320. Accessed 25 January 2020.

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More Definitions for tolerate

tolerate

verb
How to pronounce tolerate (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of tolerate

: to allow (something that is bad, unpleasant, etc.) to exist, happen, or be done
: to experience (something harmful or unpleasant) without being harmed
: to accept the feelings, behavior, or beliefs of (someone)

tolerate

verb
tol·​er·​ate | \ ˈtä-lə-ˌrāt How to pronounce tolerate (audio) \
tolerated; tolerating

Kids Definition of tolerate

1 : to allow something to be or to be done without making a move to stop it Our teacher will tolerate a certain amount of giggling.
2 : to stand the action of These plants tolerate drought well.
tol·​er·​ate | \ ˈtäl-ə-ˌrāt How to pronounce tolerate (audio) \
tolerated; tolerating

Medical Definition of tolerate

: to endure or resist the action of (as a drug or food) without serious side effects or discomfort : exhibit physiological tolerance for a premature baby…does not tolerate fats very well— H. R. Litchfield & L. H. Dembo

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