extinguish

To extinguish something means to put an end to it, and get rid of it completely. Water can extinguish a fire; nasty smells can extinguish your appetite.

Extinguish comes from the Latin word for quench, but while we might think that quenching something, say our thirst, is good, the word extinguish often has sinister overtones. In a genocide, one group tries to extinguish another — too quench their hatred, by killing everyone in the other group.

Definitions of extinguish
  1. verb
    put out, as of fires, flames, or lights
    “Too big to be extinguished at once, the forest fires at best could be contained”
    synonyms: blow out, quench, snuff out
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    Antonyms:
    ignite, light
    cause to start burning; subject to fire or great heat
    types:
    stub
    extinguish by crushing
    douse, put out
    put out, as of a candle or a light
    black out
    obliterate or extinguish
  2. verb
    extinguish by crushing
    synonyms: crush out, press out, stub out
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    type of:
    end, terminate
    bring to an end or halt
  3. verb
    put an end to; kill
    synonyms: snuff out
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    types:
    stamp
    destroy or extinguish as if by stamping with the foot
    put out, smother
    deprive of the oxygen necessary for combustion
    type of:
    do away with, eliminate, get rid of
    terminate, end, or take out
  4. verb
    terminate, end, or take out
    “Socialism extinguished these archaic customs”
    synonyms: do away with, eliminate, get rid of
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    types:
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    cancel out, wipe out
    wipe out the effect of something
    decouple
    reduce or eliminate the coupling of (one circuit or part to another)
    decouple
    eliminate airborne shock waves from (an explosive)
    annihilate, obliterate
    do away with completely, without leaving a trace
    knock out
    eliminate
    drown
    get rid of as if by submerging
    cut out
    delete or remove
    cut, prune, rationalise, rationalize
    weed out unwanted or unnecessary things
    snuff out
    put an end to; kill
    except, exclude, leave off, leave out, omit, take out
    prevent from being included or considered or accepted
    excise
    remove by cutting
    stamp
    destroy or extinguish as if by stamping with the foot
    elide
    leave or strike out
    put out, smother
    deprive of the oxygen necessary for combustion
    type of:
    destroy, destruct
    do away with, cause the destruction or undoing of
  5. verb
    kill in large numbers
    synonyms: annihilate, carry off, decimate, eliminate, eradicate, wipe out
    decimate
    kill one in every ten, as of mutineers in Roman armies
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    type of:
    kill
    cause to die; put to death, usually intentionally or knowingly
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