Definition of obfuscate in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈäbfəˌskāt/


[with object]
1Render obscure, unclear, or unintelligible: the spelling changes will deform some familiar words and obfuscate their etymological origins
More example sentences
  • Is it time to obfuscate obscurantism, so to speak, even to oneself?
  • When it comes to password integrity, the key is to obfuscate words as much as possible.
  • To the degree that those words are used to obfuscate realities that are otherwise painful to utter, our monuments will be correspondingly fragile.
obscure, confuse, make unclear, blur, muddle, complicate, overcomplicate, muddy, cloud, befog
1.1Bewilder (someone): it is more likely to obfuscate people than enlighten them
More example sentences
  • The main thing is to confuse and obfuscate the audience.
  • In that context, Marine's directorial flourishes obfuscate more than they enlighten.
  • For example, the supply of gold from official sources is on a 24-hour basis, in spite of the Washington agreement and similar declarations largely drafted in order to obfuscate rather than to enlighten.
bewilder, mystify, puzzle, perplex, confuse, baffle, confound, bemuse, befuddle, nonplus
informal flummox



Pronunciation: /äbˈfəskəˌtôrē/
Example sentences
  • At 511 pages (exactly 500 pages more than the U.S. constitution) and laden with purposefully abstruse and obfuscatory language, the constitution meets only the second of Bonaparte's criteria.
  • Government-approved academics in China have already started to trot out obfuscatory arguments designed to refute obvious objections to demands for market-economy status.
  • He's hung his statements on a very precise - and to my mind - highly technical and obfuscatory statement that none of them has ‘leaked classified information.’


Late Middle English: from late Latin obfuscat- 'darkened', from the verb obfuscare, based on Latin fuscus 'dark'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: ob·fus·cate

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