verb (used without object), mil·i·tat·ed, mil·i·tat·ing.

  1. to have a substantial effect; weigh heavily: His prison record militated against him.
  2. Obsolete.
    1. to be a soldier.
    2. to fight for a belief.


  1. (intr; usually foll by against or for) (of facts, actions, etc) to have influence or effectthe evidence militated against his release

v.1620s, “to serve as a soldier” (now rare), from Latin militatum, past participle of militare “serve as a soldier,” from miles “soldier” (see military (adj.)). Sense developed via “conflict with,” to “be evidence” for or against (1640s). Related: Militated; militating.

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