Definition of enervate in US English:



[with object]
Pronunciation /ˈɛnərˌveɪt//ˈenərˌvāt/
  • Cause (someone) to feel drained of energy or vitality; weaken.

    • ‘It enervated Sven, draining his energy and willpower, then paralyzing him.’
    • ‘Ionizing radiation enervates the human gene pool and it weakens our immune systems.’
    • ‘Shall we say this war consumes the heart and enervates the soul?’
    • ‘You leave the theatre drained and enervated, wishing you could get that time back, 15 minutes of awesome explosions notwithstanding.’
    • ‘Thanks so much and hope you regain your energy soon… don't let school or whatever it is enervate you too much.’
    • ‘The tension has enervated whole generations of players.’
    • ‘Businessmen, enervated by the pressures of city life, sought spiritual as well as physical refreshment in the new pastime of bushwalking.’
    • ‘The knowledge of a shared destiny energizes and sustains many of us, enervates and defeats others.’
    • ‘His enemies were enervated and lacked a strong voice.’
    • ‘But whether depressed by the small audience or enervated by the heat, the choir made little impact before the interval.’
    • ‘The preoccupation with the problem of evil, asserts Nietzsche, enervates the human spirit.’
    • ‘The lack of food enervated him and he couldn't produce the goods when they were required.’
    • ‘When I conjure in my mind the objections that people I know make to Christianity, I am reminded of my friend on the couch, enervated by life's manifold demands.’
    • ‘Hemingway's genius would be squandered, enervated by celebrity, and he would die an alcoholic and a suicide.’
    • ‘The day's ride had exhausted her already dwindled energy, and the night had truly enervated her.’
    • ‘Without this, poetry is enervated and becomes merely the record of consciousness no more compelling than yesterday's sports statistics.’
    exhaust, tire, fatigue, weary, wear out, devitalize, drain, sap, weaken, make weak, make feeble, enfeeble, debilitate, incapacitate, indispose, prostrate, immobilize, lay low, put out of action
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Pronunciation /ˈɛnərvət//ˈenərvət/
  • Lacking in energy or vitality.

    ‘the enervate slightness of his frail form’
    • ‘After charging his age with being an enervate breed which is "ever on his knees before the footstool of Authority," he goes on to observe that the process of statute-making ought to make one pause before according so much unquestioned deference to statutes.’
    • ‘A few weeks of the Blair, Bush, and Campbell vision of an enervate media might change their minds.’


Early 17th century: from Latin enervat- ‘weakened (by extraction of the sinews)’, from the verb enervare, from e- (variant of ex- ‘out of’ + nervus ‘sinew’.