verb (used with object), vi·o·lat·ed, vi·o·lat·ing.

  1. to break, infringe, or transgress (a law, rule, agreement, promise, instructions, etc.).
  2. to break in upon or disturb rudely; interfere thoughtlessly with: to violate his privacy.
  3. to break through or pass by force or without right: to violate a frontier.
  4. to treat irreverently or disrespectfully; desecrate; profane: violate a human right.
  5. to molest sexually, especially to rape.

verb (tr)

  1. to break, disregard, or infringe (a law, agreement, etc)
  2. to rape or otherwise sexually assault
  3. to disturb rudely or improperly; break in upon
  4. to treat irreverently or disrespectfully; outragehe violated a sanctuary
  5. obsolete to mistreat physically


  1. archaic violated or dishonoured

early 15c., “to break” (an oath, etc.), from Latin violatus (see violation). Sense of “ravish” is first recorded mid-15c. Related: Violated; violating.

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