9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[tol-uh-reyt] /ˈtɒl əˌreɪt/
verb (used with object), tolerated, tolerating.
to allow the existence, presence, practice, or act of without prohibition or hindrance; permit.
to endure without repugnance; put up with:
I can tolerate laziness, but not incompetence.
Medicine/Medical. to endure or resist the action of (a drug, poison, etc.).
Obsolete. to experience, undergo, or sustain, as pain or hardship.
Origin of tolerate
1525-35; < Latin tolerātus, past participle of tolerāre to bear (akin to thole2); see -ate1
Related forms
tolerative, adjective
tolerator, noun
nontolerated, adjective
nontolerative, adjective
untolerated, adjective
untolerating, adjective
untolerative, adjective
2. support, accept. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for tolerate
  • Some students seem unable to tolerate the appropriate use.
  • Ants from different nests were then paired off to see if they would tolerate each other, or fight.
  • Some species can tolerate acidic waters better than others.
  • Dominant breeders rely on helpers to feed chicks, but they also tolerate individuals that don't seem to help at all.
  • They tolerate a little more heat and demand less w more add to my plant list.
  • Occasionally the river would tolerate such restrictions, but more often it would not.
  • We would no longer tolerate a situation in which the minority had leisure because the majority had labor.
  • Gars inhabit lakes, bayous, and bays and are able to tolerate brackish and even salt water.
  • Show me a reason to tolerate the hazards of storing hydrogen.
  • For those who can tolerate it, though, seitan can replace meat in all kinds of recipes.
British Dictionary definitions for tolerate


verb (transitive)
to treat with indulgence, liberality, or forbearance
to permit
to be able to bear; put up with
(med) to have tolerance for (a drug, poison, etc)
Derived Forms
tolerative, adjective
tolerator, noun
Word Origin
C16: from Latin tolerāre sustain; related to thole²
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 tolerate

1530s, from Latin toleratus, past participle of tolerare (see toleration). Related: Tolerated; tolerating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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tolerate in Medicine

tolerate tol·er·ate (tŏl'ə-rāt')
v. tol·er·at·ed, tol·er·at·ing, tol·er·ates

  1. To allow without prohibiting or opposing; permit.

  2. To put up with; endure.

  3. To have tolerance for a substance or pathogen.

tol'er·a'tive adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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