E-Mail 'Real Vocabulary Quiz, Question 6: is it acceptable to use “decimate” to mean “kill or destroy in large numbers”?' To A Friend

Email a copy of 'Real Vocabulary Quiz, Question 6: is it acceptable to use “decimate” to mean “kill or destroy in large numbers”?' to a friend

* Required Field






Separate multiple entries with a comma. Maximum 5 entries.



Separate multiple entries with a comma. Maximum 5 entries.


E-Mail Image Verification

Loading ... Loading ...

1 Comment

  • Have many people really had the traditional definition drummed into them at school, or have they more often had it drummed into them somewhere else, e.g. via their peers? I am sceptical on this one.

    I think the liberal definition is best understood in terms of consequences. People say that something is decimated if it undergoes a culling so severe that recovery will not be possible for a very long time if ever. This supports the hypothesis of semantic interference from “devastate”, and agrees with The Economist that it is not applicable in cases of complete destruction.