follow Dictionary.com

Why is the ninth month called September?

modulate

[moj-uh-leyt] /ˈmɒdʒ əˌleɪt/
verb (used with object), modulated, modulating.
1.
to regulate by or adjust to a certain measure or proportion; soften; tone down.
2.
to alter or adapt (the voice) according to the circumstances, one's listener, etc.
3.
Music.
  1. to attune to a certain pitch or key.
  2. to vary the volume of (tone).
4.
Telecommunications. to cause the amplitude, frequency, phase, or intensity of (a carrier wave) to vary in accordance with a sound wave or other signal, the frequency of the signal wave usually being very much lower than that of the carrier.
verb (used without object), modulated, modulating.
5.
Telecommunications.
  1. to modulate a carrier wave.
  2. Citizens Band Radio Slang. to talk; visit:
    Enjoyed modulating with you.
6.
Music. to pass from one key to another:
to modulate abruptly from A to B flat.
Origin
1550-1560
1550-60; < Latin modulātus (past participle of modulārī to regulate (sounds), set to music, play an instrument). See module, -ate1
Related forms
modulability
[moj-uh-luh-bil-i-tee] /ˌmɒdʒ ə ləˈbɪl ɪ ti/ (Show IPA),
noun
modulative, modulatory
[moj-uh-luh-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] /ˈmɒdʒ ə ləˌtɔr i, -ˌtoʊr i/ (Show IPA),
adjective
remodulate, verb (used with object), remodulated, remodulating.
unmodulated, adjective
unmodulative, adjective
well-modulated, adjective
Synonyms
2. temper, control.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source
Examples for modulate
  • The capacity to modulate and verbalize anger in constructive ways has failed to develop in people who are violent.
  • Liquid crystal diodes do not emit light, they merely modulate either transmitted or reflected light.
  • They send data to the auditory nerve but have no way of picking up the brain's response to the ear to modulate sound.
  • She hypothesized that the electrodes might modulate the area and ease the depression.
  • As they try to modulate the market, local and central governments here are walking a thin line.
British Dictionary definitions for modulate

modulate

/ˈmɒdjʊˌleɪt/
verb
1.
(transitive) to change the tone, pitch, or volume of
2.
(transitive) to adjust or regulate the degree of
3.
(music)
  1. to subject to or undergo modulation in music
  2. (often foll by to) to make or become in tune (with a pitch, key, etc)
4.
(transitive) (physics, electronics) to cause to vary by a process of modulation
Derived Forms
modulability (ˌmɒdjʊləˈbɪlɪtɪ) noun
modulative, modulatory, adjective
modulator, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin modulātus in due measure, melodious, from modulārī to regulate, from modus measure
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for modulate
v.

1610s, in music, back-formation from modulation, or else from Latin modulatus, past participle of modulari. General sense from 1620s. In telecommunications from 1908. Related: Modulated; modulating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
modulate in Science
modulate
  (mŏj'ə-lāt')   
To vary the amplitude, frequency, or some other characteristic of a signal or power source. See also amplitude modulation, frequency modulation.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for modulate

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for modulate

11
14
Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with modulate

Nearby words for modulate