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Supposedly vs. Supposably


[suh-plant, -plahnt] /səˈplænt, -ˈplɑnt/
verb (used with object)
to take the place of (another), as through force, scheming, strategy, or the like.
to replace (one thing) by something else.
Origin of supplant
1250-1300; Middle English supplanten < Latin supplantāre to trip up, overthrow. See sup-, plant
Related forms
[suhp-luh n-tey-shuh n] /ˌsʌp lənˈteɪ ʃən/ (Show IPA),
supplanter, noun
unsupplanted, adjective
Can be confused
supplant, supplicant, suppliant.
1. remove, succeed. See replace. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for supplanting
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • All progress is initiated by challenging current concepts, and executed by supplanting existing institutions.

    Mrs. Warren's Profession George Bernard Shaw
  • If you can help him to the seniorship instead of supplanting him, be a brave boy, and do it.

    The Channings Mrs. Henry Wood
  • Thus we live in a period of which a characteristic is the supplanting of human and animal labor by machines.

  • It is the modern, not supplanting or effacing, but standing by the old.

    Royal Edinburgh Margaret Oliphant
  • When talking then of supplanting Sir Nicholas at the Towers, you spoke of your project as a 'splendid scheme.'

    Mrs. Geoffrey Duchess
  • This was a new era in the history of the supplanting, planning Jacob.

    Notes on the Book of Genesis Charles Henry Mackintosh
British Dictionary definitions for supplanting


(transitive) to take the place of, often by trickery or force: he easily supplanted his rival
Derived Forms
supplantation (ˌsʌplɑːnˈteɪʃən) noun
supplanter, noun
Word Origin
C13: via Old French from Latin supplantāre to trip up, from sub- from below + planta sole of the foot
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for supplanting



c.1300, "to trip up, overthrow, defeat, dispossess," from Old French supplanter "to trip up, overthrow," from Latin supplantare "trip up, overthrow," from sub "under" + planta "sole of the foot" (see plant (n.)). Meaning "replace one thing with another" first recorded 1670s. Interesting sense evolution parallel in Hebrew akabh "he beguiled," from akebh "heel."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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