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[uh-lee-vee-eyt] /əˈli viˌeɪt/
verb (used with object), alleviated, alleviating.
to make easier to endure; lessen; mitigate:
to alleviate sorrow; to alleviate pain.
Origin of alleviate
late Middle English
1425-75; late Middle English alleviaten < Late Latin alleviātus (past participle of alleviāre), equivalent to al- al- + levi(s) light, not heavy + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
unalleviated, adjective
unalleviatedly, adverb
unalleviating, adjective
unalleviatingly, adverb
lighten, diminish, abate, relieve, assuage.
increase, strengthen; aggravate, intensify. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for alleviating
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • How much good might be done by womanhood, if they would devote their time, means and energy to alleviating suffering.

    The Story of a Life J. Breckenridge Ellis
  • My life will be devoted to alleviating the sorrows of the poor and wretched.

    Oswald Langdon Carson Jay Lee
  • To spend one's life instructing man is but second in importance to alleviating his sufferings.

  • She searched for some alleviating suggestion, some happier hope; none came.

    Moods Louisa May Alcott
  • Satisfied, however, with alleviating the public burden, they attempted not to remove it.

  • Could this money be more usefully employed than in alleviating these evils?

    Arthur Mervyn Charles Brockden Brown
  • But now of this idolized husband she was bereaved in a moment, and without any alleviating circumstances.

    A Woman's Love Amelia Alderson Opie
  • Although I am desirous of alleviating this, I cannot, as I also am poor.

British Dictionary definitions for alleviating


(transitive) to make (pain, sorrow, etc) easier to bear; lessen; relieve
Derived Forms
alleviation, noun
alleviative, adjective
alleviator, noun
Word Origin
C15: from Late Latin alleviāre to mitigate, from Latin levis light
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 alleviating



late 15c., from Middle French allevier or directly from Late Latin alleviatus, past participle of alleviare "to lighten," from Latin ad- "to" (see ad-) + levis "light" in weight (see lever). Related: Alleviated; alleviating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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