verb (used with object), rec·ti·fied, rec·ti·fy·ing.

  1. to make, put, or set right; remedy; correct: He sent them a check to rectify his account.
  2. to put right by adjustment or calculation, as an instrument or a course at sea.
  3. Chemistry. to purify (especially a spirit or liquor) by repeated distillation.
  4. Electricity. to change (an alternating current) into a direct current.
  5. to determine the length of (a curve).
  6. Astronomy, Geography. to adjust (a globe) for the solution of any proposed problem.

verb -fies, -fying or -fied (tr)

  1. to put right; correct; remedy
  2. to separate (a substance) from a mixture or refine (a substance) by fractional distillation
  3. to convert (alternating current) into direct current
  4. maths to determine the length of (a curve)
  5. to cause (an object) to assume a linear motion or characteristic

c.1400, from Old French rectifier, literally “to make straight” (14c.), from Late Latin rectificare “make right,” from Latin rectus “straight” (see right (adj.1)) + root of facere “to make” (see factitious). Related: Rectified; rectifying.


  1. To set right; correct.
  2. To refine or purify, especially by distillation.

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