Definition of animate in English:



  • 1Bring to life.

    ‘Prometheus stole fire from heaven to animate his clay men’
    • ‘It is animated by light - direct sunlight creates a glow.’
    • ‘Tadao Ando's stark concrete walls, for instance, assume the remarkable potency of mass transformed by nature when animated by changing light.’
    • ‘Theatre should be about ideas - animating them, making them live and be relevant to society.’
    • ‘She is represented here as a sleeping earth goddess, reference to broad ancient principles of respect for the environment and to Aboriginal stories that animates the landscape with the presence and deeds of ancestral figures.’
    • ‘The power animating the universe, while destructive at times in the cyclical ebb and flow of time and space, is fundamentally grounded in balance.’
    • ‘The dead-end of Western policy towards Baghdad is also animating fears about what comes next.’
    • ‘What is certain is that any such withdrawal would betray the religious concepts of the state which animate the faith-based initiative.’
    • ‘But all are animated by color and line moving over them.’
    • ‘Life, comprised of a complex chain of bio-chemical and physiological processes is activated and animated by an invisible bio-magnetic force.’
    • ‘Yet it is more than just a skin, attested by the generous proportions of the apartments and the way in which light animates the interiors.’
    • ‘What strange powers animate the ancient songs brought by the settlers of Founderston from their distant island home along with the bones of Lazarus?’
    • ‘It is this Burkean notion of rhetoric which animates the spaces of everyday life.’
    • ‘I don't know if I buy the idea that this is actually what's animating their foreign policy, though I think the fundamental distinction is sound.’
    • ‘A similar theme animates Waiting for the Barbarians and The Life and Times of Michael K, the two strongest novels by 2003 Nobel laureate J. M. Coetzee.’
    • ‘But it is not moral revulsion, let alone newsworthiness, that is animating the news media.’
    • ‘By moving beyond the divisions that often segregate both people and art forms, Diakite eloquently demonstrates the interconnectedness that animates the universe.’
    • ‘Considering the matter from the opposite point of view brings more clearly into focus the constellation of concerns that animates his thinking here.’
    • ‘The exclamations seem to rumble up through McLeish's body as he delivers them, his feelings animating his frame.’
    • ‘On this understanding, if the body shows signs of life, then there must be a soul which is animating it; if, at the other end of life, no vital signs can be detected, then ‘the soul has fled’.’
    • ‘It throws light on a fantastic plan to animate the promenade of the resort by building a series of four giant follies.’
    operate, switch on, turn on, start, start off, start up, set going, get going, trigger off, trigger, trip, set in motion, actuate, initiate, initialize, energize
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    1. 1.1Give inspiration, encouragement, or renewed vigour to.
      ‘she has animated the government with a sense of political direction’
      • ‘Reflections of life often animate and inspire the enduring music we call 'classical’.’
      • ‘This book will animate, engage and stimulate babies and have nursery classes jumping about with noisy enthusiasm.’
      • ‘His inspired perspective has animated prophets and artists and dreamers down through the centuries.’
      • ‘It is the breath of life and the inward light that animates the human body and inspires the human soul.’
      • ‘The one-nation ideal, which animated our national struggle, is still there.’
      • ‘Moving images and sound fill a room animating thought processes and daydreams.’
      • ‘It is this contrast between rich and poor - a contrast so visually obvious as to make the landscape of Caracas feel almost didactic - that animates Venezuelan politics.’
      • ‘The show's animating principle, that O'Briain wants to look back from his deathbed on a life well lived, is equally admirable.’
      • ‘The subject of sport animated him, switched on the plug.’
      • ‘Sexual energy, whether male or female, is the electrical charge that animates life.’
      • ‘Talk of renewing the armed struggle was a common theme that animated the narratives.’
      • ‘Metaphors animate and renew meanings; metaphysics supplies tools to think with.’
      • ‘We knew we had to bring the lifeline of communications to everyone, and this animated our entire response.’
      • ‘Brown may never return to the ideas that animated his initial intuition about Oakland as an ‘ecopolis of the future.’’
      • ‘In Paris and later, a strong sense of color continued to animate his work.’
      • ‘The budget cuts, a lack of jobs, even a potential war are not animating today's youth.’
      • ‘Perhaps it is hardships and the thrill of risk that animate life most fully, and perhaps it is freedom that binds.’
      • ‘‘Reform of the state should be the core animating idea of the progressive governance agenda this year,’ he writes.’
      • ‘Egalitarianism is the underlying value system that animates all of these groups - though they differ greatly among themselves in the policies and strategies they embrace to realize their values.’
      • ‘As for personal picks, local choreographer Marie Chouinard, always a festival fave, animates her company both physically and vocally in her latest creation Chorale, which premiered in Italy earlier this year.’
      enliven, vitalize, give life to, give new life to, breathe life into, breathe new life into, energize, invigorate, revive, vivify, liven up, light up, cheer up, gladden
      encourage, hearten, inspire, exhilarate, thrill, excite, fire, arouse, rouse, stir, stimulate, galvanize, electrify
      buck up, pep up, give someone a buzz, ginger up
      light a fire under
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  • 2Give (a film or character) the appearance of movement using animation techniques.

    ‘much-loved characters have been animated in this Franco-Canadian co-production’
    • ‘In some ways Pocahontas is a natural extension of previous Disney animated films like The Little Mermaid and Beauty and the Beast.’
    • ‘She is the lighting technical director of the film ‘Shrek’, which was hailed world over as the best animated feature film.’
    • ‘Most people know Disney's Snow White as the first animated feature film.’
    • ‘In the last ten years, the vast majority of Disney animated films have been soundtrack compilations with a story tacked on.’
    • ‘It should also be pointed out that the fact that DreamWorks' next four animated films will all be made digitally has nothing to do with the box office failure of Sinbad.’
    • ‘Last year, Walt Disney Studios released what has been rumored to be one of its final traditionally animated feature-length films.’
    • ‘As long as future computer animated films maintain the same level of quality as that of the pioneers in the field, their ascendance can only be seen as a positive thing.’
    • ‘Those who associate him only with animating dinosaurs and skeleton creatures would have been fascinated to see what made up the bulk of the program last night.’
    • ‘Oskar Fischinger back in the Thirties was animating abstract visuals to music and projecting those.’
    • ‘The best animated character in the history of the genre is Daffy Duck.’
    • ‘Davis became one of many who would hide his comic book pages when a supervisor came by, and hurriedly return to animating Popeye cartoons.’
    • ‘The agreement begins in 2006 when Pixar will release its first animated feature film while not under the Disney umbrella.’
    • ‘I liked Tarzan, but there hasn't been a truly great Disney animated film that didn't come from Pixar since The Lion King.’
    • ‘After years of easily passing $100 million at the box office, recent Disney animated films have struggled to hit that mark.’
    • ‘He lent his voice talent to many animated characters, but this one is closest to his own spirit.’
    • ‘The film too often falls into the Sky Captain Syndrome: animated characters fighting other animated characters simply is not interesting.’
    • ‘Over the past year, however, digitally animated films have begun to show an assembly line quality, and Valiant represents a new low.’
    • ‘A team of digital artists can spend months animating a character or creating a landscape.’
    • ‘Not that long ago, it was a painstaking task to mix animated characters with real ones.’
    • ‘All animated films may not be for children, but most are.’


  • Alive or having life.

    ‘gods in a wide variety of forms, both animate and inanimate’
    • ‘It is this quality that makes Griffiths' poetry good - that touching distance between the animate and the inanimate, life and words, that can be breached by poetry.’
    • ‘Everything animate or inanimate that is within the universe is controlled and owned by the Lord.’
    • ‘I can assume any form you please, animate or inanimate.’
    • ‘A successful actor-network brings together animate and inanimate objects and resources into a complex, everchanging resilient heterogeneous network.’
    • ‘Singh manifests myriad hues creating a symbiosis between animate and inanimate objects.’
    • ‘The Tibetan medicine system believes that all phenomena (both animate and inanimate) are comprised of five fundamental elements.’
    • ‘The truth of the matter is that we are very fragile, transient creatures, totally dependent on the complexity of those around us, human and non-human, animate and inanimate.’
    • ‘The ‘agent’ in question is merely an organic part of A's body and so not a rational agent or even an ‘animate’ agent, in the sense in which an entire living organism is an animate agent.’
    • ‘Despite this similarity, there are still elemental differences between being alive and deceased, and between the animate and inanimate.’
    • ‘All of God's creation, animate and inanimate, reflected God's generosity toward his creatures and evoked an outpouring of praise and thanks.’
    • ‘I am late coming to this understanding of the creative power of art to touch us in unexpected ways but so grateful to finally feel the beat of animate life in the inanimate object.’
    • ‘We shifted our perspective, slowed ourselves down and began to notice the world as a living, breathing beauty, an animate environment of which we humans are a portion, but not its possessors.’
    • ‘Schopenhauer believes that the various species of animate and inanimate things in the world are eternal and static.’
    • ‘Explaining the logic of numerology, he says, everybody and everything, animate or inanimate, has vibrations.’
    • ‘Zen also builds, however, on the East Asian, especially the Taoist, naturalist view that ultimate reality is manifested in each and every concrete phenomenon, including animate and inanimate beings.’
    • ‘This is clear evidence that viruses are unlike any known living thing and are much more like inanimate than animate matter.’
    • ‘Traditional Maori beliefs are, for example, that all objects, both animate and inanimate, have a life force, a mauri.’
    • ‘But equally essential to making sense of the chaos of the world and our place in it, is our ability to distinguish between objects and different kinds of things, so living or dead, animate or inanimate.’
    • ‘The animate and the inanimate, human and objects and finally cinema and painting had been exquisitely juxtaposed for superb equivocal effect.’
    • ‘A child uses many things when externalizing - both animate and inanimate objects are innocently used to promote and protect individual core identity.’
    living, alive, live, breathing, sentient, conscious
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Late Middle English: from Latin animat- instilled with life, from the verb animare, from anima life, soul.