v. def·e·cat·ed, def·e·cat·ing, def·e·cates
To void feces from the bowels.
1. To void (feces) from the bowels.
2. To remove impurities from (a liquid, such as fruit juice), especially in sugar refining.
[Latin dēfaecāre, to clean the dregs from : dē-, de- + faex, faec-, dregs.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.