Definition of decapitate in English:

decapitate

Syllabification: de·cap·i·tate
Pronunciation: /dəˈkapəˌtāt
 
/

verb

[with object]
1Cut off the head of (a person or animal): (as adjective decapitated) a decapitated body
More example sentences
  • As a final gesture of revenge, Beowulf finds Grendel's body and decapitates him.
  • The second-half started with Colin Nish somehow remaining unpunished by referee Calum Murray for all but decapitating Alan Maybury, but it was symptomatic of Kilmarnock having more aggression about them.
  • Possibly a misprint, but did the man who was sentenced to three months for decapitating Margaret Thatcher's statue really offer to do 150,000 hours community work instead?
Synonyms
behead, guillotine, put on the block
1.1Attempt to undermine (a group or organization) by removing its leaders: Italy’s organized-crime network was decapitated when the godfather of the Sicilian Mafia was arrested
More example sentences
  • But I do see a clear pattern - a White House trying to decapitate another news organization.
  • The problem, though, is that you're not going to decapitate an organization like JI.
  • Sendero Luminoso has been decapitated, its leader Abimael Guzman is behind bars.

Origin

early 17th century: from late Latin decapitat- 'decapitated', from the verb decapitare, from de- (expressing removal) + caput, capit- 'head'.

Derivatives

decapitation

Pronunciation: /diˌkapiˈtāSHən/
noun
More example sentences
  • He made no effort to disassociate himself from their claims of killings, decapitations, and other war crimes.
  • The movie itself is short at only 50 minutes, but in those few brief moments there are enough explosions, decapitations, and toilet humour to satisfy the most depraved and violence-loving viewer.
  • What I don't like is violence and bloodshed in my movies, and a faithful adaptation promised to have oodles of shootings, busted limbs and even decapitations.

decapitator

Pronunciation: /-ˌtātər/
noun
More example sentences
  • He would have known that the chosen instrument of revolutionary vengeance was the guillotine, that relentless mechanical decapitator which made the streets of Paris run with royal and aristocratic blood.
  • What's she doing in a world of murderers, rapists, torturers, sadists, blood drinkers, decapitators and pimps?
  • The ALF, which is simply the name adopted by people who act illegally in behalf of animal rights, breaks inanimate objects such as stereotaxic devices and decapitators in order to save lives.

Definition of decapitate in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day hypnopompic
Pronunciation: ˌhɪpnə(ʊ)ˈpɒmpɪk
adjective
relating to the state immediately preceding waking up