transitive verb (polluted; polluting) Etymology: Middle English, from Latin pollutus, past participle of polluere, from por- (akin to Latin per through) + -luere (akin to Latin lutum mud, Greek lyma dirt, defilement) — more at for Date: 14th century 1. a. to make ceremonially or morally impure ; defile b. debase 1 <
using language to deceive or mislead pollutes language — Linda C. Lederman
2. a. to make physically impure or unclean ; befoul, dirty b. to contaminate (an environment) especially with man-made waste Synonyms: see contaminatepolluter nounpollutive adjective

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Pollute — Pol*lute , v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Polluted}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Polluting}.] [L. pollutus, p. p. of polluere to defile, to pollute, from a prep. appearing only in comp. + luere to wash. See {Position}, {Lave}.] 1. To make foul, impure, or unclean; to …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pollute — UK US /pəˈluːt/ verb [I or T] ► ENVIRONMENT to make water, the air, or land dirty and not safe for people, animals, and plants, especially with waste or chemicals: »You don t need to pollute the planet to grow your economy. »He expects coal… …   Financial and business terms

  • pollute — ► VERB 1) contaminate with harmful or poisonous substances. 2) corrupt. DERIVATIVES pollutant adjective & noun polluter noun pollution noun. ORIGIN Latin polluere pollute, defile …   English terms dictionary

  • pollute — [pə lo͞ot′] vt. polluted, polluting [ME poluten < L pollutus, pp. of polluere, to pollute < * por , for per , intens. + luere, to soil < IE base * leu , dirt > Gr lyma, dirt] 1. to make unclean, impure, or corrupt; defile; dirty 2. to …   English World dictionary

  • Pollute — Pol*lute , a. [L. pollutus.] Polluted. [R.] Milton. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pollute — I verb adulterate, alloy, befoul, begrime, bemire, besmirch, bespatter, contaminate, corrupt, debase, debauch, defile, degrade, denaturalize, deprave, desecrate, destroy, dirty, dishonor, filthify, foul, grime, impair, infect, maculate, make foul …   Law dictionary

  • pollute — (v.) late 14c., defile, from L. pollutus, pp. of polluere (see POLLUTION (Cf. pollution)). Related: Polluted; polluting. Meaning contaminate the environment first recorded 1954 …   Etymology dictionary

  • pollute — *contaminate, defile, taint, attaint Analogous words: *debase, vitiate, corrupt, deprave, pervert: *abuse, outrage, mistreat: profane, desecrate, blaspheme (see corresponding nouns at PROFANATION) …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • pollute — [v] make dirty; corrupt adulterate, alloy, befoul, besmirch, contaminate, debase, debauch, defile, deprave, desecrate, dirty, dishonor, foul, infect, make filthy, mar, poison, profane, soil, spoil, stain, sully, taint, violate; concepts 246,254… …   New thesaurus

  • pollute — verb 1) fish farms will pollute the lake Syn: contaminate, adulterate, taint, poison, foul, dirty, soil, infect; literary befoul Ant: purify 2) propaganda polluted this nation Syn …   Thesaurus of popular words

  • pollute — verb (T) 1 to make air, water, soil etc dangerously dirty and not suitable for people to use: beaches polluted by raw sewage | industrial emissions that pollute the air 2 pollute sb s mind to give someone immoral thoughts and spoil their… …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

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