Thesaurus

prostrate

adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms of prostrate

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 depleted in strength, energy, or freshness
  • prostrate marathoners typically spend the day after the race recovering

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3 lying with the face downwards
  • the suspects lay prostrate on the floor while the police searched the room

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prostrate

verb

Synonyms & Antonyms of prostrate (Entry 2 of 2)

1 to diminish the physical strength of
  • an athlete prostrated for weeks by a bout of pneumonia

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2 to render powerless, ineffective, or unable to move
  • the huge increase in gas prices really prostrated the nation's economic engine

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3 to subject to incapacitating emotional or mental stress
  • a widow prostrated by crushing grief

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4 to strike (someone) so forcefully as to cause a fall
  • the boxer bragged that he could prostrate any opponenent with a single blow

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Frequently Asked Questions About prostrate

How does the adjective prostrate differ from other similar words?

Some common synonyms of prostrate are prone, recumbent, and supine. While all these words mean "lying down," prostrate implies lying full-length as in submission, defeat, or physical collapse.

a runner fell prostrate at the finish line

When would prone be a good substitute for prostrate?

While in some cases nearly identical to prostrate, prone implies a position with the front of the body turned toward the supporting surface.

push-ups require a prone position

Where would recumbent be a reasonable alternative to prostrate?

The words recumbent and prostrate are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, recumbent implies the posture of one sleeping or resting.

a patient comfortably recumbent in a hospital bed

When could supine be used to replace prostrate?

While the synonyms supine and prostrate are close in meaning, supine implies lying on one's back and suggests inertness or abjectness.

lying supine on the couch

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Time Traveler for prostrate

Time Traveler

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

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Cite this Entry

“Prostrate.” Merriam-Webster.com Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/prostrate. Accessed 19 Oct. 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on prostrate

Dictionary: Definition of prostrate

Medical Dictionary: Definition of prostrate

Nglish: Translation of prostrate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of prostrate for Arabic Speakers

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