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[viv-uh-sekt, viv-uh-sekt] /ˈvɪv əˌsɛkt, ˌvɪv əˈsɛkt/
verb (used with object)
to dissect the living body of (an animal).
verb (used without object)
to practice vivisection.
Origin of vivisect
1860-65; back formation from vivisection
Related forms
vivisector, noun
self-vivisector, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for vivisect
Historical Examples
  • Whether they vivisect painfully or painlessly, they are trying to find out whether the truth is there or not.

    Eugenics and Other Evils G. K. Chesterton
  • To do any great thing with the heart of another, you must vivisect your own, and this truth Theodora had to practise continually.

    A Reconstructed Marriage Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr
  • He is not allowed to try his germs and specifics upon them; he is not allowed to vivisect them.

    Damn! Henry Louis Mencken
  • To stand within the protection which her sex afforded and vivisect anew his tired soul?

    Carmen Ariza Charles Francis Stocking
  • The man who can vivisect an emotion, and lay bare a heart-beat in print, knows a subtle joy.

British Dictionary definitions for vivisect


/ˈvɪvɪˌsɛkt; ˌvɪvɪˈsɛkt/
to subject (an animal) to vivisection
Derived Forms
vivisector, noun
Word Origin
C19: back formation from vivisection
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 vivisect

1859, back-formation from vivisection. Related: Vivisected; vivisecting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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