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French étioler, from Norman French étieuler, ultimately from Old French estuble (stubble), from Latin stupla, from stipula (straw, stubble) (English stubble).


  • enPR: ēʹtē-ə-lāt', IPA(key): /ˈiːti.əleɪt/
  • Hyphenation: eti‧o‧late


etiolate (third-person singular simple present etiolates, present participle etiolating, simple past and past participle etiolated)

  1. To make pale through lack of light, especially of a plant.
  2. To make pale and sickly-looking.
    • 1980, Anthony Burgess, Earthly Powers:
      She was a very lovely woman in her late thirties, in a silk dress of screaming scarlet that would have etiolated a white woman to bled veal.
    • 1995, Martin Amis, The information:
      Gwynn and Richard were at the Westway Health and Fitness Centre, surrounded by thirty or forty etiolated drunks: playing snooker.
  3. (intransitive) To become pale or blanched.

Related terms[edit]



etiolate (comparative more etiolate, superlative most etiolate)

  1. etiolated