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Syllabification: mil·i·tate
Pronunciation: /ˈmiləˌtāt

Definition of militate in English:


[no object] (militate against)
(Of a fact or circumstance) be a powerful or conclusive factor in preventing: these fundamental differences will militate against the two communities coming together
More example sentences
  • The problem with this cheerful notion is that circumstances militate against nature in the big city.
  • Have the international community played a positive role or have they in fact militated against the development plans through the so called International Development Assistance agencies?
  • Of course, several circumstances militated against that happening.
tend to prevent, work against, hinder, discourage, prejudice, be detrimental to


late 16th century: from Latin militat- 'served as a soldier', from the verb militare, from miles, milit- 'soldier'.


The verbs militate and mitigate are sometimes confused. See mitigate (usage).

Definition of militate in:

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