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1630s, "to render (something) whole," from Latin integratus, past participle of integrare "make whole," from integer "whole" (see integer). Meaning "to put together parts or elements and combine them into a whole" is from 1802. Integrate in the "racially desegregate" sense is a back-formation from integration, dating to the 1948 U.S. presidential contest. Related: Integrated; integrating.