I. adjective Etymology: Middle English attenuat, from Latin attenuatus, past participle of attenuare to make thin, from ad- + tenuis thin — more at thin Date: 15th century 1. reduced especially in thickness, density, or force 2. tapering gradually usually to a long slender point <
attenuate leaves
II. verb (-ated; -ating) Date: 1530 transitive verb 1. to make thin or slender 2. to make thin in consistency ; rarefy 3. to lessen the amount, force, magnitude, or value of ; weaken 4. to reduce the severity, virulence, or vitality of <
an attenuated virus
intransitive verb to become thin, fine, or less • attenuation noun

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Attenuate — At*ten u*ate, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Attenuated}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Attenuating}.] [L. attenuatus, p. p. of attenuare; ad + tenuare to make thin, tenuis thin. See {Thin}.] 1. To make thin or slender, as by mechanical or chemical action upon… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • attenuate — I verb attenuare, bate, constrict, constringe, contract, curtail, debilitate, decrease, deflate, devitalize, diminish, diminish in effect, extenuare, extenuate, lessen, lighten, make thin, narrow, reduce, reduce in intensity, reduce in strength,… …   Law dictionary

  • Attenuate — At*ten u*ate, v. i. To become thin, slender, or fine; to grow less; to lessen. [1913 Webster] The attention attenuates as its sphere contracts. Coleridge. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Attenuate — At*ten u*ate, Attenuated At*ten u*a ted, a. [L. attenuatus, p. p.] 1. Made thin or slender. [1913 Webster] 2. Made thin or less viscid; rarefied. Bacon. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • attenuate — (v.) to make thin, to make less, 1520s, from L. attenuatus enfeebled, weak, pp. of attenuare to make thin, lessen, diminish, from ad to (see AD (Cf. ad )) + tenuare make thin, from tenuis thin (see TENET (Cf …   Etymology dictionary

  • attenuate — vb *thin, rarefy, dilute, extenuate Analogous words: *weaken, sap: reduce, lessen (see DECREASE): dissipate (see SCATTER): *contract, shrink, constrict, deflate Antonyms: enlarge: dilate: enrich Contrasted words: * …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • attenuate — [v] weaken abate, constrict, contract, cripple, debilitate, deflate, disable, dissipate, enfeeble, extenuate, lessen, mitigate, sap, shrink, thin, undermine, vitiate; concept 240 Ant. expand, increase, intensify, strengthen …   New thesaurus

  • attenuate — ► VERB 1) reduce the strength, effect, or value of. 2) make thin or thinner. DERIVATIVES attenuation noun. ORIGIN Latin attenuare make slender …   English terms dictionary

  • attenuate — [ə ten′yo͞o āt΄; ] for adj. [, ə ten′yo͞oit, ə ten′yo͞oāt΄] vt. attenuated, attenuating [< L attenuatus, pp. of attenuare, to make thin < ad to + tenuare < tenuis, THIN] 1. to make slender or thin 2. to dilute or rarefy 3. to lessen in… …   English World dictionary

  • Attenuate — To weaken, dilute, thin, reduce, weaken, diminish. The use of attenuate in medicine is not new. In the 16th century, eating dried figs was claimed to attenuate the body fluids. Now attenuate refers to procedures that weaken an agent of disease (a …   Medical dictionary

  • attenuate — [[t]əte̱njueɪt[/t]] attenuates, attenuating, attenuated VERB To attenuate something means to reduce it or weaken it. [FORMAL] [V n] You could never eliminate risk, but preparation and training could attenuate it... [V ed] Theirs had been an… …   English dictionary

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.