Devastate Definition

devastated, devastates, devastating
devastated, devastates, devastating
To lay waste; make desolate; ravage; destroy.
Webster's New World
To make helpless; overwhelm.
The teacher's criticism devastated him.
Webster's New World

To ruin many or all things over a large area, such as most or all buildings of a city, or cities of a region, or trees of a forest.

To destroy a whole collection of related ideas, beliefs, and strongly held opinions.
To break beyond recovery or repair so that the only options are abandonment or the clearing away of useless remains (if any) and starting over.

Origin of Devastate

  • Latin dēvāstāre dēvāstāt- dē- de- vāstāre to lay waste (from vāstus empty, desolate euə- in Indo-European roots)

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • From Latin dēvastātus, perfect passive participle of dēvastō, from dē- (augmentative prefix) + vastō (“I destroy, I lay waste to”).

    From Wiktionary

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