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[mod-er-nahyz] /ˈmɒd ərˌnaɪz/
verb (used with object), modernized, modernizing.
to make modern; give a new or modern character or appearance to:
to modernize one's ideas; to modernize a kitchen.
verb (used without object), modernized, modernizing.
to become modern; adopt modern ways, views, etc.
Origin of modernize
1740-50; modern(ism) + -ize
Related forms
modernization, noun
modernizer, noun
antimodernization, adjective
overmodernization, noun
overmodernize, verb, overmodernized, overmodernizing.
remodernization, noun
remodernize, verb, remodernized, remodernizing.
unmodernized, adjective
1. renovate, refurbish, update. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for modernize
  • Most of the rest of the printing business has been tougher to modernize.
  • She is beginning to give pension to agriculture workers, modernize medical services, and upgrade education.
  • And it has struggled to buy refined petroleum and the goods it needs to modernize its oil and gas sector.
  • In a push to modernize its culture and media industries, the government recently gave publishers more autonomy.
  • He still favors public financing in principle, and he says he'll work to modernize it in practice.
  • Morales argues the road is meant to modernize an impoverished nation that desperately needs development.
  • We must modernize multilateralism and markets for a changing world economy.
British Dictionary definitions for modernize


(transitive) to make modern in appearance or style: to modernize a room
(intransitive) to adopt modern ways, ideas, etc
Derived Forms
modernization, modernisation, noun
modernizer, moderniser, noun
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 modernize

1748, from modern + -ize, or from French moderniser. Related: Modernized; modernizing; modernizer.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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