sterilize


sterilize
   to destroy
   Literally, to render barren, whence to purify or make clean. It may refer to obliterating tapes or removing documents from files if they might prove embarrassing. In Vietnam military jargon, it meant dropping bombs and trying to kill or drive out the Vietcong:
    We sterilize the area prior to the introduction of the R.D. teams. (M. McCarthy, 1967 — R.D. stood for rural development, or trying to persuade villagers to reject the Viet-cong)

How not to say what you mean: A dictionary of euphemisms. . 2014.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • sterilize — 1 Sterilize, castrate, spay, emasculate, alter, mutilate, geld, caponize mean to make incapable of producing offspring. Sterilize, the most general of these terms, is applicable to both human beings and animals and is used whether the end is… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Sterilize — Ster il*ize, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Sterilized}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Sterilizing}.] [Cf. F. st[ e]riliser.] 1. To make sterile or unproductive; to impoverish, as land; to exhaust of fertility. [R.] Sterilizing the earth. Woodward. [1913 Webster] 2.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • sterilize — index decontaminate Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • sterilize — destroy the fertility of, 1690s (in reference to soil), from STERILE (Cf. sterile) + IZE (Cf. ize); of living things from 1828. Meaning render free of microorganisms is from 1878. Related: Sterilized; sterilizing …   Etymology dictionary

  • sterilize — (Amer.) ster·i·lize || sterÉ™laɪz v. make sterile; decontaminate, disinfect (also sterilise) …   English contemporary dictionary

  • sterilize — [v] make clean or unproductive alter, antisepticize, autoclave, castrate, change, clean, decontaminate, desexualize, disinfect, emasculate, fix, fumigate, incapacitate, make sterile, neuter, pasteurize, purify, sanitize, spay; concepts 231,250… …   New thesaurus

  • sterilize — (also sterilise) ► VERB 1) make sterile. 2) deprive of the ability to produce offspring by removing or blocking the sex organs. DERIVATIVES sterilization noun …   English terms dictionary

  • sterilize — [ster′ə līz΄] vt. sterilized, sterilizing to make sterile; specif., a) to make incapable of producing others of its kind, as by removing the organs of reproduction or preventing them from functioning effectively b) to make (land) unproductive c)… …   English World dictionary

  • sterilize — sf., Fr. stérilisé 1) Bozulmasına yol açabilecek mikroorganizmalardan ve mayalardan sterilizasyon yöntemiyle arınmış olan (ürün vb.) Sterilize süt. Sterilize sebze. 2) Kısırlaştırılmış 3) tıp Steril Sterilize şişe. Sterilize tüp. Atasözü, Deyim… …   Çağatay Osmanlı Sözlük

  • sterilize — sterilizable, adj. sterilizability, n. sterilizer, n. /ster euh luyz /, v.t., sterilized, sterilizing. 1. to destroy microorganisms in or on, usually by bringing to a high temperature with steam, dry heat, or boiling liquid. 2. to destroy the… …   Universalium

  • sterilize — [[t]ste̱rɪlaɪz[/t]] sterilizes, sterilizing, sterilized (in BRIT, also use sterilise) 1) VERB If you sterilize a thing or a place, you make it completely clean and free from germs. [V n] Sulphur is also used to sterilize equipment... [V n] The… …   English dictionary


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