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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce exterminate (audio)

Dictionary definition of exterminate

To completely destroy or eradicate something, usually with intent.
"The pest control company was hired to exterminate the mice in the house."

Detailed meaning of exterminate

It is often associated with the elimination of pests, such as insects, rodents, or other unwanted animals, as well as the eradication of diseases or harmful organisms. The term can also refer to the deliberate killing of individuals or groups of people, often as part of a genocidal or oppressive regime. Overall, the term 'exterminate' conveys a sense of thoroughness and finality, indicating that the targeted entity has been completely eliminated and is no longer a threat or presence.

Example sentences containing exterminate

1. The government ordered troops to exterminate the rebel group.
2. The farmer had to exterminate the infestation of locusts on his crops.
3. The exterminator used poison to exterminate the termites in the building.
4. The hunters went out to exterminate the feral hogs that were damaging crops.
5. The town council voted to exterminate the invasive plant species that was taking over the park.
6. The laboratory had to exterminate the contaminated samples to prevent the spread of the disease.

History and etymology of exterminate

The verb 'exterminate' has its roots in Latin, drawing from the word 'exterminare.' In Latin, 'ex' means 'out of' or 'completely,' and 'terminus' refers to 'boundary' or 'limit.' The term originally conveyed the idea of driving someone or something beyond a boundary or limit, often implying a forceful expulsion. Over time, the meaning evolved to signify the complete destruction or eradication of something, typically with intent. The etymology of 'exterminate' thus reflects its modern usage, where it conveys the idea of thorough and deliberate elimination, often associated with the removal or obliteration of pests, threats, or undesirable elements.

Quiz: Find the meaning of exterminate

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Further usage examples of exterminate

1. The king ordered his soldiers to exterminate the dragon that was terrorizing the village.
2. The conservationist worked to exterminate the invasive fish species in the river.
3. The homeowner tried to exterminate the wasp nest in the attic but was unsuccessful.
4. The government promised to exterminate the drug trade in the country.
5. The company had to exterminate the computer virus that had infected their system.
6. The virus threatened to exterminate entire populations.
7. Pest control measures aim to exterminate infestations.
8. The mission was to exterminate the alien invaders.
9. War can lead to efforts to exterminate enemies.
10. The dictator sought to exterminate dissent.
11. The exterminate command eradicated the computer virus.
12. Genocides aim to exterminate entire ethnic groups.
13. The invasive species threatened to exterminate native plants.
14. The exterminate order targeted the rebel stronghold.
15. Bacteria-killing antibiotics help exterminate infections.
16. The pesticide was designed to exterminate crop pests.
17. Efforts to exterminate poverty require comprehensive strategies.
18. The soldiers were ordered to exterminate the insurgents.
19. The conquerors sought to exterminate rival kingdoms.
20. The exterminate button deleted the harmful code.
21. Exterminate policies have led to human rights violations.
22. Some species have evolved to exterminate competitors.
23. The exterminate strategy wiped out the invasive species.
24. The dictator's regime attempted to exterminate opposition.
25. The superhero vowed to exterminate supervillains.
26. The military's goal was to exterminate the terrorist cells.
27. The disease threatened to exterminate wildlife populations.
28. Exterminate measures are necessary to control outbreaks.
29. The exterminate mission aimed to protect the nation.
30. The ruthless regime sought to exterminate dissenting voices.


eradicate, create, breed, cultivate


Decline and Disintegrate, Danger and Threat, Elimination and Suspension, Endings and Transitions, Destruction and Devastation

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