verb (used with object), cen·tral·ized, cen·tral·iz·ing.

  1. to draw to or gather about a center.
  2. to bring under one control, especially in government: to centralize budgeting in one agency.

verb (used without object), cen·tral·ized, cen·tral·iz·ing.

  1. to come together at or to form a center.


  1. to draw or move (something) to or towards a centre
  2. to bring or come under central control, esp governmental control

v.1795, “to bring to a center;” 1800, “come to a center,” from central + -ize, on model of French centraliser (1790). A word from the French Revolution. Related: Centralized; centralizing. Government should have a central point throughout its whole periphery. The state of the monthly expences amounted to four hundred millions; but within these seven months, it is reduced to one hundred and eighty millions. Such is the effect of the centralization of government; and the more we centralize it, the more we shall find our expenses decrease. [Saint-Just, “Discourse on the State of the Finances”]

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