extenuate


extenuate
extenuating, adj.extenuatingly, adv.extenuative, adj.extenuator, n.
/ik sten"yooh ayt'/, v.t., extenuated, extenuating.
1. to represent (a fault, offense, etc.) as less serious: to extenuate a crime.
2. to serve to make (a fault, offense, etc.) seem less serious.
3. to underestimate, underrate, or make light of: Do not extenuate the difficulties we are in.
4. Archaic.
a. to make thin, lean, or emaciated.
b. to reduce the consistency or density of.
[1375-1425; late ME (adj.) < L extenuatus, ptp. of extenuare, equiv. to ex- EX-1 + tenuare to make thin or small; see -ATE1]

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Extenuate — Ex*ten u*ate, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Extenuated}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Extenuating}.] [L. extenuatus, p. p. of extenuare to make thin, loosen, weaken; ex out + tenuare to make thin, tenuis thin. See {Tenuity}.] 1. To make thin or slender; to draw out… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • extenuate — I verb absolve, acquit, allow for, attemper, attenuate, clear, condone, debilitate, deprive of strength, dilute, diminish, enervate, enfeeble, exculpate, excuse, exonerate, forgive, justify, lessen, levare, lighten, make allowance for, make… …   Law dictionary

  • Extenuate — Ex*ten u*ate, v. i. To become thinner; to make excuses; to advance palliating considerations. Burke. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Extenuate — Ex*ten u*ate, a. [L. extenuatus, p. p.] Thin; slender. [Obs.] Huloet. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • extenuate — 1520s, from L. extenuatus, pp. of extenuare lessen, make small, reduce, diminish, from ex out (see EX (Cf. ex )) + tenuare make thin, from tenuis thin (see TENET (Cf. tenet)). Related: Extenuated; …   Etymology dictionary

  • extenuate — vb 1 attenuate, *thin, dilute, rarefy Analogous words: diminish, lessen, reduce, *decrease: *weaken, enfeeble, debilitate: *moderate, temper, qualify Antonyms: intensify Contrasted words: aggravate, heighten, enhance (see INTENSIFY) …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • extenuate — means ‘to lessen or reduce the seriousness of (guilt or an offence)’ and usually occurs in the participial form extenuating: • Poverty and desperation are extenuating factors in Bangladesh, but not in the United States New Yorker, 1973 • The law… …   Modern English usage

  • extenuate — [v] lessen, mitigate decrease, diminish, downplay, excuse, justify, make allowances, minimize, moderate, palliate, qualify, reduce, soften; concepts 247,698,776 …   New thesaurus

  • extenuate — ► VERB 1) (usu. as adj. extenuating) lessen the seriousness of (an offence) by referring to a factor that helps excuse it. 2) (extenuated) literary thin. DERIVATIVES extenuation noun extenuatory adjective. ORIGIN …   English terms dictionary

  • extenuate — [ek sten′yo͞o āt΄, iksten′yo͞o āt΄] vt. extenuated, extenuating [< L extenuatus, pp. of extenuare < ex , out + tenuare, to make thin < tenuis, THIN] 1. Archaic to make thin or lean 2. Now Rare to diminish or weaken 3. to lessen or seem… …   English World dictionary


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