defile

1 [dih-fahyl]
verb (used with object), defiled, defiling.
1.
to make foul, dirty, or unclean; pollute; taint; debase.
2.
to violate the chastity of.
3.
to make impure for ceremonial use; desecrate.
4.
to sully, as a person's reputation.

Origin:
1275–1325; Middle English defilen, defelen, alteration of defoilen (by association with filen to file3) < Anglo-French, Old French defouler to trample on, violate; compare Old English befȳlan to befoul

defilable, adjective
defilement, noun
defiler, noun
defilingly, adverb
nondefilement, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged

defile

2 [dih-fahyl, dee-fahyl]
noun
1.
any narrow passage, especially between mountains.
verb (used without object), defiled, defiling.
2.
to march in a line or by files.

Origin:
1675–85; < French défilé, noun use of past participle of défiler to file off; see defilade

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
defile1 (dɪˈfaɪl)
 
vb
1.  to make foul or dirty; pollute
2.  to tarnish or sully the brightness of; taint; corrupt
3.  to damage or sully (someone's good name, reputation, etc)
4.  to make unfit for ceremonial use; desecrate
5.  to violate the chastity of
 
[C14: from earlier defoilen (influenced by filen to file³), from Old French defouler to trample underfoot, abuse, from de- + fouler to tread upon; see full²]
 
de'filement1
 
n
 
de'filer1
 
n

defile2 (ˈdiːfaɪl, dɪˈfaɪl)
 
n
1.  a narrow pass or gorge, esp one between two mountains
2.  a single file of soldiers, etc
 
vb
3.  chiefly military to march or cause to march in single file
 
[C17: from French défilé, from défiler to file off, from filer to march in a column, from Old French: to spin, from fil thread, from Latin fīlum]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

defile
"make filthy," c.1280, from O.Fr. defouler "trample down, violate," from de- "down" + fouler "to tread," from L. fullo "person who cleans and thickens cloth by stamping on it." Sense infl. by foul (q.v.); spelling infl. by obsolete native befile, which it replaced and which meant about the same thing.

defile
"narrow passage," 1640s, especially in a military sense, "a narrow passage down which troops can march only in single file," from Fr. défilé, n. use of pp. of défiler "march by files."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
Cape Wind opponents argue the turbines will defile a pristine body of water.
It features a soft rubber nub so it won't defile your screen.
Those conference tables which defile the human spirit must be overturned.
Kafka's characters are both defiled and enraptured by the world.
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