va·​cate | \ ˈvā-ˌkāt How to pronounce vacate (audio) , vā-ˈkāt How to pronounce vacate (audio) \
vacated; vacating

Definition of vacate

transitive verb

1a : to deprive of an incumbent or occupant
b : to give up the incumbency or occupancy of
2 : to make legally void : annul

intransitive verb

: to vacate an office, post, or tenancy

Examples of vacate in a Sentence

She refused to vacate her post even under increased pressure. The election will fill the congressional seat vacated by the retiring senator. The police told everyone to vacate the premises. Students must vacate their rooms at the end of the semester. The court vacated the conviction.
Recent Examples on the Web Arguello noted however that this was a maximum penalty and more likely was a $150 fine and request to vacate the area. Duncan Madden, Forbes, 9 Aug. 2022 The administration’s action follows a federal judge’s ruling to vacate his previous decision to restart the policy. Hamed Aleaziz, Los Angeles Times, 8 Aug. 2022 Weger and his defense attorney Andy Hale see the DNA findings, which Hale shared with Rolling Stone before they were made public during a court hearing on Monday, as enough evidence to vacate his conviction. Andrea Marks, Rolling Stone, 1 Aug. 2022 In the event the senator needs to vacate his seat, New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham (D) — who happens to be a distant cousin of Luján — would appoint a replacement. Washington Post, 1 Feb. 2022 Prehn, whose term expired May 1, continues to refuse to vacate his seat on the board, citing a 1964 Wisconsin Supreme Court ruling that allows board members to remain in place until their replacement has been confirmed by the Senate. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 26 Jan. 2022 Berns will become mayor on Jan. 1 and vacate his council seat. cleveland, 19 Dec. 2021 The motion filed by the district attorney’s office asked a judge to resentence Vargas, who has spent 12 years in prison, to time served on the gun possession charge and vacate the assault charge because of Reyes’ recent legal troubles. James Queally, Los Angeles Times, 28 July 2022 After revelations of the Gun Trace Task Force routinely violating people’s rights and stealing drugs and money using the authority of their badge, the state’s attorney’s office moved to vacate Anderson’s charge. Emily Opilo, Baltimore Sun, 27 July 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of vacate

1643, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 2

History and Etymology for vacate

New Latin vacātus, past participle of vacāre "to annul," going back to Latin, "to be empty, have space" (sense probably by confusion with Medieval Latin vacuāre "to annul," going back to Latin, "to empty," derivative of vacuus "empty") — more at vacant, vacuum entry 1

Learn More About vacate

Dictionary Entries Near vacate




See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for vacate

Last Updated

13 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Vacate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 15 Aug. 2022.

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

More Definitions for vacate


va·​cate | \ ˈvā-ˌkāt How to pronounce vacate (audio) \
vacated; vacating

Kids Definition of vacate

: to leave empty or not used The tenants vacated the house.


vacated; vacating

Legal Definition of vacate

transitive verb

1 : to make void : annul, set aside vacate a lower court order
2a : to make vacant
b : to give up the occupancy of

intransitive verb

: to vacate an office, post, or tenancy

More from Merriam-Webster on vacate

Nglish: Translation of vacate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vacate for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Words Named After People

  • name tags
  • Namesake of the leotard, Jules Léotard had what profession?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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