Word of the Day Archive
Wednesday December 19, 2001
, transitive verb:
1. To bring together; to fuse together; to join or meld.
2. To combine (as two readings of a text) into one whole.
Scott Reynolds's creepy debut feature [film] conflates the present and the past with ingenious use of flashbacks.
-- Anne Billson, "Bent beneath the weight of its own righteousness", Sunday Telegraph, March 1, 1998
Painting America as a drug-ridden society leads to bad policy -- as does the tendency in some quarters to conflate the various drug abuses into a single dreadful statistic.
-- William Raspberry, "Not a Drug-Ridden Society", Washington Post, April 21, 2000
. . .lean and mobile military units that conflate the traditional categories of police officers, commandos, emergency-relief specialists, diplomats, and, of course, intelligence officers.
-- Robert D. Kaplan, "The roles of the CIA and the military may merge", The Atlantic, February 1998
Conflate is from Latin conflatus, past participle of conflare, "to blow together; to put together," from con-, "with, together" + flare, "to blow."