- Operate is defined as to perform a function or medical procedure.
- An example of to operate is making a call on your cell phone.
- An example of to operate is driving a car.
- An example of to operate is a doctor removing someones appendix.
This man is operating a motor vehicle.Licensed from iStockPhoto
- to be in action so as to produce an effect; act; function; work
- to bring about a desired or appropriate effect; have a certain influence
- to carry on strategic military movements
- to perform a surgical operation
Origin: from Classical Latin operatus, past participle of operari, to work from opus (gen. operis): see opus
- Now Rare to bring about as an effect
- to put or keep in action; work (a machine, etc.)
- to conduct or direct the affairs of (a business, etc.); manage
- Informal to perform a surgical operation on
Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
verb op·er·at·ed, op·er·at·ing, op·er·ates verb, intransitive
- To perform a function; work: The motor operates smoothly.
- To perform surgery.
- a. To exert an influence: forces operating on the economy.b. To produce a desired or proper effect: a drug that operates quickly.
- To carry on a military or naval action or campaign.
- Informal To conduct business in an irregular or devious manner: drug dealers operating in residential and urban areas.
- To control the functioning of; run: operate a sewing machine.
- To conduct the affairs of; manage: operate a business.
Origin: Latin operārī, operāt-, from opera, work; see op- in Indo-European roots.
operate - Medical Definition