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[dih-bil-i-teyt] /dɪˈbɪl ɪˌteɪt/
verb (used with object), debilitated, debilitating.
to make weak or feeble; enfeeble:
The siege of pneumonia debilitated her completely.
Origin of debilitate
1525-35; < Latin dēbilitātus (past participle of dēbilitāre), equivalent to dēbilit-, stem of dēbilis weak + -ātus -ate1
Related forms
debilitant, noun
debilitation, noun
debilitative, adjective
nondebilitating, adjective
nondebilitation, noun
nondebilitative, adjective
overdebilitate, verb (used with object), overdebilitated, overdebilitating.
undebilitated, adjective
undebilitating, adjective
undebilitative, adjective
weaken, deplete, enervate, devitalize. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for debilitated
  • Her accomplishments are all the more remarkable given that she is largely homebound, debilitated by chronic fatigue syndrome.
  • His government has been distracted and debilitated by scandals.
  • One patient died and the other was left chronically debilitated.
  • Or find yourself too old and too debilitated to do much more in a day than what you read here.
  • He was broke and physically debilitated from a childhood ailment that was probably polio.
  • The committee concluded that debilitated by syphilis and other ailments, he had died of sunstroke.
  • For debilitated individuals, however, survival meant relying on care from group members.
  • And he is gravely debilitated by asthma, an affliction which he refuses to allow to incapacitate him.
  • Years later, when old or debilitated, such patients could experience an unfortunate reactivation of long-dormant infections.
  • Well, a few percent are debilitated by disease and some of those will choose not to reproduce.
British Dictionary definitions for debilitated


(transitive) to make feeble; weaken
Derived Forms
debilitation, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin dēbilitāre, from dēbilis weak
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 debilitated



1530s, from Latin debilitatus, past participle of debilitare "to weaken," from debilis "weak" (see debility). Related: Debilitated; debilitating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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