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Alternative forms[edit]


From Middle English distillen, from Old French distiller, from Latin distīllō, variant of Latin dēstillō, dēstillāre.


  • (UK) IPA(key): [dɪˈstɪɫ]
  • Rhymes: -ɪl
  • Hyphenation: dis‧til


distil (third-person singular simple present distils, present participle distilling, simple past and past participle distilled)

  1. (transitive) To subject to distillation.
    • 1880, Tullidge's Quarterly Magazine of Utah
      In fact, it is used in a variety of medicines; we boil, burn, and distil it, to produce salts, corrodents, sublimates, []
  2. (intransitive) To undergo or be produced by distillation.
  3. (transitive) To make by means of distillation, especially whisky.
  4. (transitive) To exude in small drops.
    Firs distil resin.
  5. (transitive) To impart in small quantities.
  6. (transitive) To extract the essence of; concentrate; purify.
    • 2005, Plato, Sophist. Translation by Lesley Brown. 239e.
      he'll pretend not to know about mirrors or water or even seeing, but will ask you to give only what can be distilled from what you say.
  7. (intransitive) To trickle down or fall in small drops; ooze out.
  8. (intransitive) To be manifested gently or gradually.
  9. (intransitive) To drip or be wet with. (Can we add an example for this sense?)

Derived terms[edit]


Old High German[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]


From Proto-Germanic *þistilaz, whence also Old English þistel, Old Norse þistill


distil f

  1. thistle


  • Middle High German: distel