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titivate

Line breaks: titi|vate
Pronunciation: /ˈtɪtɪveɪt
 
/

Definition of titivate in English:

verb

[with object]
1Make minor enhancements to: she slapped on her warpaint and titivated her hair
More example sentences
  • In the meantime, the review, a fine piece, primps and titivates my fancy, in much the same way that a sorbet readies the palate before the main course arrives.
  • Wigs for the dolls are imported ready styled, but of course they can be titivated to suit and the long wigs can be plaited.
  • It was nice to get home in the daylight, and have time to titivate the garden before tea.
Synonyms
groom, tidy, arrange, brush, comb, smooth, smarten (up), spruce up, freshen (up), beautify, pretty, preen, primp, prink (up)
informal doll up, tart up
North American informal gussy up
archaic trig, plume
1.1 (titivate oneself) Make oneself look smart: he was titivating himself, slicking his hair and freshening his breath [no object]: Grace had titivated in the bathroom
More example sentences
  • Given that, at Christmas, the world is full of beautiful women titivating themselves, I think my malaise is understandable.
  • I need to go upstairs and titivate myself before hard-working husband's return.
  • In this discussion, attempt is devoted to discern the political symbolism he should now titivate himself with in the light of fulfilling the presidential rite of passage.

Origin

early 19th century (in early use, also as tidivate): perhaps from tidy, on the pattern of cultivate.

More
  • tide from (Old English):

    In Old English a tide was a period or season, a sense surviving in Eastertide and Shrovetide, and it was not used in connection with the sea until the later medieval period. The saying time and tide wait for no man originally referred just to time, with tide used as a repetition of the sense to add emphasis. Despite the great difference in their contemporary meanings, tidy (Middle English) is from tide. Right up to the early 18th century it meant ‘timely, seasonable, opportune’, and acquired its current sense via the uses ‘attractive, good-looking’ and ‘good, pleasing’ around 1700. Perhaps based on tidy is the verb titivate which in the early 19th century was also spelt tidivate.

Usage

The verbs titillate and titivate sound alike but do not have the same meaning. Titillate, a far commoner word, meansstimulate or excite’, as in the press are paid to titillate the public. Titivate, on the other hand, meansadorn or smarten up’, as in she titivated her hair.

Derivatives

titivation

1
Pronunciation: /-ˈveɪʃ(ə)n/
noun
Example sentences
  • Of course, we'll be so busy preparing for this damn party (final unpackings as we assemble newly arrived furniture, last-minute house and garden titivations, shopping etc), I'm not sure I'll have time to blog before Monday.
  • While I underwent the titivations, the suit had been pressed.
  • To ask who should be there is not just a protocol question for the titivation of social secretaries.

Words that rhyme with titivate

activatecaptivate

Definition of titivate in:

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