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[dis-uh-peyt] /ˈdɪs əˌpeɪt/
verb (used with object), dissipated, dissipating.
to scatter in various directions; disperse; dispel.
to spend or use wastefully or extravagantly; squander; deplete:
to dissipate one's talents; to dissipate a fortune on high living.
verb (used without object), dissipated, dissipating.
to become scattered or dispersed; be dispelled; disintegrate:
The sun shone and the mist dissipated.
to indulge in extravagant, intemperate, or dissolute pleasure.
1525-35; < Latin dissipātus (past participle of dissipāre, dissupāre to scatter); see -ate1
Related forms
dissipater, dissipator, noun
dissipative, adjective
[dis-uh-puh-tiv-i-tee] /ˌdɪs ə pəˈtɪv ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
nondissipative, adjective
1. See scatter. 3. disappear, vanish.
1, 3. unite. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for dissipating
  • Sometimes they unravel as they spin, eventually weakening and then dissipating.
  • The tail then snapped back to normal, dissipating the energy over the next minute and a half.
  • Such a system could have helped the animal regulate its body temperature by dissipating heat.
  • In fact, the vestigial atmosphere is still slowly dissipating into space.
  • In reality, greenhouses merely suppress convective heat loss, preventing the heated air from dissipating.
  • The simulated cycle had the clouds dissipating and re-forming over the course of a couple hours.
  • Density and temperature are primary controls on how far seismic waves can propagate through rock before dissipating.
  • The ammonia will flow throughout the station's chambers, dissipating heat via three external radiators.
  • Sweating delays the onset of this critical heat buildup by dissipating the excess heat through evaporation.
  • He also succeeded in dissipating a substantial amount of the family wealth.
British Dictionary definitions for dissipating


to exhaust or be exhausted by dispersion
(transitive) to scatter or break up
(intransitive) to indulge in the pursuit of pleasure
Derived Forms
dissipater, dissipator, noun
dissipative, adjective
Word Origin
C15: from Latin dissipāre to disperse, from dis-1 + supāre to throw
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 dissipating



early 15c., from Latin dissipatus, past participle of dissipare "to spread abroad, scatter, disperse; squander, disintegrate," from dis- "apart" (see dis-) + supare "to throw, scatter," from PIE *swep- "to throw, sling, cast" (cf. Lithuanian supu "to swing, rock," Old Church Slavonic supo "to strew"). Related: Dissipated; dissipates; dissipating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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