- To vitiate is to corrupt, invalidate or weaken morally.
- When you bribe a policeman, this is an example of when you vitiate the policeman.
- When you make a legal contract invalid, this is an example of a time when you vitiate the contract.
- When you give an underage person a drink, this an example of when you vitiate a child.
transitive verbvitiated, vitiating
- to make imperfect, faulty, or impure; spoil; corrupt
- to weaken morally; debase; pervert
- to make (a contract, or other legal instrument) ineffective; invalidate
Origin of vitiate; from Classical Latin vitiatus, past participle of vitiare, to vitiate ; from vitium, vice
transitive verbvi·ti·at·ed, vi·ti·at·ing, vi·ti·ates
- To reduce the value or quality of; impair or spoil: “His famous compilation of norms was vitiated by a major sampling error” (Frederick Crews).
- To corrupt morally; debase: “My anxieties &ellipsis; still are great lest the numerous &ellipsis; snares of vice should vitiate your early habits of virtue” (Abigail Adams). See Synonyms at corrupt.
- To make ineffective (a contract or legal stipulation, for example); invalidate.
Origin of vitiateLatin vitiāre, vitiāt-, from vitium, fault.
(third-person singular simple present vitiates, present participle vitiating, simple past and past participle vitiated)
- to spoil, make faulty; to reduce the value, quality, or effectiveness of something
- to debase or morally corrupt
- (archaic) to violate, to rape
- 1965: ‘Crush the cockatrice,’ he groaned, from his death-cell. ‘I am dead in law’ – but of the girl he denied that he had ‘attempted to vitiate her at Nine years old’; for ‘upon the word of a dying man, both her Eyes did see, and her Hands did act in all that was done’. — John Fowles, The Magus
- to make something ineffective, to invalidate
From vitiātus, the perfect passive participle of Latin vitiō (“damage, spoil”), from vitium (“vice”).
vitiate - Legal Definition
- To interfere with; to impair; to render null and void; to cause to have no effect.
- To invalidate either partially or completely.
- To corrupt morally.