translate

verb
trans·​late | \ tran(t)s-ˈlāt How to pronounce translate (audio) , tranz-; ˈtran(t)s-ˌlāt, ˈtranz- \
translated; translating

Definition of translate

transitive verb

1a : to turn into one's own or another language
b : to transfer or turn from one set of symbols into another : transcribe
c(1) : to express in different terms and especially different words : paraphrase
(2) : to express in more comprehensible terms : explain, interpret
2a : to bear, remove, or change from one place, state, form, or appearance to another : transfer, transform translate ideas into action
b : to convey to heaven or to a nontemporal condition without death
c : to transfer (a bishop) from one see to another
3 : enrapture
4 : to subject to mathematical translation
5 : to subject (genetic information) to translation in protein synthesis

intransitive verb

1 : to practice translation or make a translation also : to admit of or be adaptable to translation a word that doesn't translate easily
2 : to undergo a translation
3 : lead, result usually used with into believes that tax cuts will translate into economic growth

Other Words from translate

translatability \ (ˌ)tran(t)s-​ˌlā-​tə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce translate (audio) , (ˌ)tranz-​ \ noun
The translatability of other native two-dimensional designs into the commercial medium of silk screens, however, may not be so clearcut. — Margaret B. Blackman et al.
translatable \ tran(t)s-​ˈlā-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce translate (audio) , tranz-​ \ adjective
The word is of Derrida's own coinage and is deliberately ambiguous (and therefore not translatable), being derived from the French … — Ann Jefferson … but the resultant information is spotty and not readily translatable into an average national trend. — Barry Commoner
translator \ ˈtran(t)s-​ˌlā-​tər How to pronounce translate (audio) , ˈtranz-​ ; tran(t)s-​ˈlā-​tər , tranz-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for translate

Synonyms

Antonyms

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of translate in a Sentence

My client speaks only Spanish. Will you translate for me? The French word “bonjour” translates as “hello” in English. We need someone who can translate Japanese into English. We have translated the report. The book has been translated into 37 languages. Can you translate this technical jargon? Seventy million Americans—that translates into one American out of every four—are under the age of 24. See More
Recent Examples on the Web With many prospective employees knocking at the door and bringing with them a diverse array of expertise that can translate across industries, cannabis companies should welcome them with open arms. Arshad Lasi, Rolling Stone, 5 May 2022 Creativity, intuition, initiative, and critical thinking are human skills that will not likely translate to robots – at least not soon. Ashley Stahl, Forbes, 3 May 2022 The author of nine novels, Bhagat is known for lucid and fast-moving stories that translate well into film. Patrick Frater, Variety, 2 May 2022 Emerson is a good-sized athlete with the length, toughness and coverage awareness that will translate well to the next level. Scott Patsko, cleveland, 29 Apr. 2022 That's a toughness that will translate at any level. Jeff Potrykus, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 31 Mar. 2022 Plus, more information on common Delta and Omicron symptoms that could translate into likely Deltacron symptoms. Zee Krstic, Good Housekeeping, 19 Mar. 2022 Despite a brief but promising boxing run, Adams kept filling his tool box with lessons that could translate from one sport to the other. Bryce Miller Columnist, San Diego Union-Tribune, 19 Mar. 2022 In an underwhelming year for running backs, Hall stands out for an instinctive and fluid running style that should translate well to the NFL. Michael Middlehurst-schwartz, USA TODAY, 29 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'translate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of translate

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2a

History and Etymology for translate

Middle English, from Anglo-French translater, from Latin translatus (past participle of transferre to transfer, translate), from trans- + latus, past participle of ferre to carry — more at tolerate, bear

Buying Guide

Learn a new language with apps selected by our Reviews team.

Learn More About translate

Time Traveler for translate

Time Traveler

The first known use of translate was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near translate

transl

translate

translate into

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for translate

Last Updated

13 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Translate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/translate. Accessed 16 May. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for translate

translate

verb
trans·​late | \ trans-ˈlāt How to pronounce translate (audio) \
translated; translating

Kids Definition of translate

1 : to turn from one language into another
2 : to change from one form to another Let's translate words into action.

Other Words from translate

translator \ -​ˈlā-​tər \ noun

translate

transitive verb
trans·​late | \ tran(t)s-ˈlāt, tranz- How to pronounce translate (audio) \
translated; translating

Medical Definition of translate

: to subject (as genetic information) to translation in protein synthesis

More from Merriam-Webster on translate

Nglish: Translation of translate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of translate for Arabic Speakers

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Name That Color

  • a light greenish blue color
  • Name that color:
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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