Definition of adulterate in English:

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Pronunciation: /əˈdʌltəreɪt/
[with object]
Render (something) poorer in quality by adding another substance: the brewer is said to adulterate his beer
More example sentences
  • It was illegally added to chilli powder imported in 2001 by a firm in Hull which again did not know the banned substance was present, apparently after producers in India adulterated products with the red dye.
  • Pot smokers short on time can use a variety of methods to avoid testing positive, such as diluting their urine by drinking a lot of water, substituting someone else's urine, or adulterating their sample with masking agents.
  • The significant feature is that it is still the natural derivative of the plant, and, save exceptionally, it is not adulterated by the addition of any further substances.
make impure, degrade, debase, spoil, taint, defile, contaminate, pollute, foul, sully;
doctor, tamper with, mix, lace, dilute, water down, thin out, weaken;
informal cut, spike, dope
rare vitiate


Pronunciation: /əˈdʌlt(ə)rət/
Not pure or genuine: adulterate remedies



Pronunciation: /ədʌlt(ə)ˈreɪʃ(ə)n/
Example sentences
  • One of the brands states boldly that it is the safest thing that one will drink on the day and goes on to say that they test for ‘not four, but 45’ types of possible adulterations.
  • The public perception is that it is wrong and that they do not agree with adulteration of the water supply to address a relatively small problem.
  • The technique, which can detect adulteration and locational variation of active constituents of plant materials, has been patented in the U.S. and the European Union.


Pronunciation: /əˈdʌltəreɪtə/
Example sentences
  • The adulterator now has to his disposal a number of natural isolates of lower priced essential oils.
  • ‘The aim of the adulterators is not extermination,’ said one Italian police officer wryly.
  • The difference between an accidental crack, from dropping or hitting the object, and a breach that allowed the thief or adulterator access to the goods, would also be apparent.


Early 16th century (as an adjective): from Latin adulterat- 'corrupted', from the verb adulterare.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: adul¦ter|ate

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