vindicate

verb
vin·​di·​cate | \ ˈvin-də-ˌkāt How to pronounce vindicate (audio) \
vindicated; vindicating

Definition of vindicate

transitive verb

1a : to free from allegation or blame
(2) : to provide justification or defense for : justify
c : to protect from attack or encroachment : defend
2 : avenge
3 : to maintain a right to
4 obsolete : to set free : deliver

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Synonyms & Antonyms for vindicate

Synonyms

Antonyms

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Choose the Right Synonym for vindicate

exculpate, absolve, exonerate, acquit, vindicate mean to free from a charge. exculpate implies a clearing from blame or fault often in a matter of small importance. exculpating himself from the charge of overenthusiasm absolve implies a release either from an obligation that binds the conscience or from the consequences of disobeying the law or committing a sin. cannot be absolved of blame exonerate implies a complete clearance from an accusation or charge and from any attendant suspicion of blame or guilt. exonerated by the investigation acquit implies a formal decision in one's favor with respect to a definite charge. voted to acquit the defendant vindicate may refer to things as well as persons that have been subjected to critical attack or imputation of guilt, weakness, or folly, and implies a clearing effected by proving the unfairness of such criticism or blame. her judgment was vindicated

maintain, assert, defend, vindicate, justify mean to uphold as true, right, just, or reasonable. maintain stresses firmness of conviction. steadfastly maintained his innocence assert suggests determination to make others accept one's claim. asserted her rights defend implies maintaining in the face of attack or criticism. defended his voting record vindicate implies successfully defending. his success vindicated our faith in him justify implies showing to be true, just, or valid by appeal to a standard or to precedent. the action was used to justify military intervention

Did You Know?

It's not surprising that the two earliest senses of "vindicate," which has been used in English since at least the mid-16th century, are "to set free" (a sense that is now obsolete) and "to avenge." Vindicate derives from Latin vindicatus, the past participle of the verb vindicare, meaning "to set free, avenge, or lay claim to." "Vindicare," in turn, derives from "vindex," a noun meaning "claimant" or "avenger." Other descendants of "vindicare" in English include such vengeful words as "avenge" itself, "revenge," "vengeance," "vendetta," and "vindictive." Closer cousins of "vindicate" are "vindicable" ("capable of being vindicated") and the archaic word vindicative ("punitive").

Examples of vindicate in a Sentence

She will be completely vindicated by the evidence. These discoveries vindicate their theory. Their approach to the problem has been vindicated by the positive results. He felt vindicated when the truth became known.
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Recent Examples on the Web For the 49er offense to bounce back towards the elite in 2021, Aiyuk will likely need to definitively vindicate the decision to trade up for him last year. Nicholas Mcgee, Forbes, 8 June 2021 In 2001, Gates emerged from an antitrust saga determined to vindicate his reputation. Mohit Mookim, Wired, 19 May 2021 This would seem to vindicate Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who insisted that Autopilot couldn't have been in operation in the crash. Laura Sky Brown, Car and Driver, 10 May 2021 The only real issue then, is whether there is a reasonable alternative to televising the trial that would vindicate the defendants' Sixth Amendment rights and the First Amendment rights of the public and the press. Chao Xiong, Star Tribune, 28 Apr. 2021 On Thursday, the governor doubled down on his comments that James's report will vindicate him. Nicholas Rowan, Washington Examiner, 1 May 2021 Shortly after Lee’s death, his former lieutenants attempted to vindicate the Southern war effort by deifying their beloved commander. John Reeves, WSJ, 23 Apr. 2021 But Lawrence Jacobs, the director of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance, at the University of Minnesota, believes that history may vindicate Mondale. Jane Mayer, The New Yorker, 19 Apr. 2021 At the federal level, Section 1983 can be a formidable tool for someone to vindicate their rights. Matt Ford, The New Republic, 13 Apr. 2021

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

circa 1571, in the meaning defined at sense 4

History and Etymology for vindicate

Latin vindicatus, past participle of vindicare to lay claim to, avenge, from vindic-, vindex claimant, avenger

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Time Traveler for vindicate

Time Traveler

The first known use of vindicate was circa 1571

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Last Updated

11 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Vindicate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/vindicate. Accessed 14 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for vindicate

vindicate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of vindicate

: to show that (someone) should not be blamed for a crime, mistake, etc. : to show that (someone) is not guilty
: to show that (someone or something that has been criticized or doubted) is correct, true, or reasonable

vindicate

verb
vin·​di·​cate | \ ˈvin-də-ˌkāt How to pronounce vindicate (audio) \
vindicated; vindicating

Kids Definition of vindicate

1 : to free from blame or guilt The evidence will vindicate her.
2 : to show to be true or correct Later discoveries vindicated their claim.

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