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From French titrer, from titre (title, quality, chemical proportion).



titrate (third-person singular simple present titrates, present participle titrating, simple past and past participle titrated)

  1. (analytical chemistry) To ascertain the amount of a constituent in a solution (or other mixture) by measuring the volume of a known concentration (the "standard solution") needed to complete a reaction.
    • 2004, Martin Torgoff, Can't Find My Way Home [] , Simon & Schuster, →ISBN, page 122:
      He was obsessed with making LSD even purer than Sandoz, producing it first in powder form in gelatin capsules as well as light-blue liquid (“Mother's Milk”) that was easily recognizable when titrated onto sugar cubes.
  2. (medicine, intransitive) To adjust the amount of a drug consumed until the desired effects are achieved.
    • A 5mg dose could not ease the pain, so he titrated to 10mg which brought him immediate relief.
  3. (figurative) To precisely control.
    Synonyms: calibrate, fine-tune, guage
    • 2016 April 3, Luisa Dillner, “Can psychological treatments be harmful?”, in The Guardian[1]:
      In crisis debriefing, because it is done in group sessions, you can’t titrate the amount of exposure to the individual, so some may get more upset.
    • 2016 October 19, Melanie Thernstrom, “The Anti-Helicopter Parent’s Plea: Let Kids Play!”, in New York Times[2]:
      "All mammals engage in dangerous play," Gray told me. "Dangerous play is how kids learn how to titrate fear."
    • 2022 September 20, Eliot A. Cohen, “Putin Is Cornered”, in The Atlantic[3]:
      The error lies in thinking that one can titrate the application of violence to achieve exquisitely precise results. To the extent that the West continues to attempt to do so, it will merely ensure more mass graves like those of Bucha and Izyum, and more soldiers lying limbless or in the burn wards of Ukrainian military hospitals.

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  1. second-person singular voseo imperative of titrar combined with te