1 : to set right : remedy
2 : to purify (as alcohol) especially by repeated or fractional distillation
3 : to correct by removing errors
Did You Know?
Which of the following words does not share its ancestry with rectify—direct, regimen, obstruct, correct, or resurrection? Like rectify, four of these words ultimately come from Latin regere, which can mean "to lead straight," "to direct," or "to rule." Correct and direct come from regere via Latin corrigere and dirigere, respectively. Resurrection comes from Latin resurgere, whose stem surgere, meaning "to rise," is a combination of sub- and regere. Regimen is from Latin regimen ("position of authority," "direction," "set of rules"), itself from regere. And rectify is from regere by way of Latin rectus ("right"). Obstruct is the only one of the set that has no relation to rectify. It traces back to Latin struere, meaning "to build" or "to heap up."
After Jennifer pointed out to the store manager that she was not charged the sale price for her purchase, he promised to rectify the situation and refund her the difference.
"'At the time I couldn't say that there was a place in all of Asia that made real, slow-cooked barbecue,' he said. So Walker rectified that; he opened Bubba’s in 2006, a Texas-style barbecue joint." — Joshua Hunt, The Texas Monthly, 4 July 2016
Test Your Vocabulary with M-W Quizzes
Word Family Quiz
Unscramble the letters to create a French-derived word that originates from Latin regere and is the name for a director responsible for staging a ballet: GUEERRSIS.VIEW THE ANSWER
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