v. e·vac·u·at·ed, e·vac·u·at·ing, e·vac·u·ates
a. To withdraw or depart from; vacate: The coastal areas were evacuated before the hurricane made landfall.
b. To withdraw or send away (troops or inhabitants) from a threatened area: The Coast Guard helped evacuate the citizens after the flood.
c. To relinquish military possession or occupation of (a town, for example).
2. To excrete or discharge waste matter from (the bowel, for example).
a. To empty or remove the contents of (a closed space or container).
b. To empty or remove (fluid, for example) from a closed space or container.
c. To create a vacuum in.
1. To withdraw from or vacate a place or area, especially as a protective measure: The mayor urged the residents to evacuate before the hurricane struck.
2. To excrete waste matter from the body.
[Middle English evacuaten, to expel (excessive or morbid humors) from the body (according to medieval theories of physiology), from Latin ēvacuāre, ēvacuāt-, to empty out : ē-, ex-, ex- + vacuus, empty (from vacāre, to be empty; see euə- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots).]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 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:
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