Share this entry

dilapidate Syllabification: di·lap·i·date
Pronunciation: /dəˈlapəˌdāt/

Definition of dilapidate in English:


[with object] archaic
Cause (something) to fall into disrepair or ruin.
Example sentences
  • Deprived of others, free solitude, like the astronauts' weightless state, dilapidates muscles, bones, and blood.
  • All the money has fled to the suburbs and left the city to dilapidate and disintegrate.
  • The buildings were dilapidating yet splendid to behold.


Early 16th century (in the sense 'waste, squander'): from Latin dilapidat- 'demolished, squandered', from the verb dilapidare, literally 'scatter as if throwing stones', from di- 'apart, abroad'+ lapis, lapid- 'stone'.



Pronunciation: /diˌlapiˈdāSHən/
Example sentences
  • It was a sturdy, conical-shaped tent that was built of sod and mud, but it looked pretty welcoming compared to the dilapidation around it.
  • Although this may surprise you, you're not the only person who lives here, and you're contributing to the dilapidation of our city.
  • After the dilapidation of urban modernism, what kinds of city and what forms of architecture await us?

Words that rhyme with dilapidate

consolidate • intimidate

Definition of dilapidate in:

Share this entry


What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

More on dilapidate

Nearby words

Translate dilapidate

into Italian
Word of the day doofus
Pronunciation: ˈduːfʌs
a stupid person