Other forms: incarnated; incarnates; incarnating

Incarnate means “having a bodily form.” If you encounter someone who pulls off butterflies’ wings for fun, you might describe that person as “evil incarnate.”

The meaning of incarnate is precisely what its Latin roots suggest. The prefix in- means “in” and caro means “flesh,” so incarnate means “in the flesh.” The word can be used in positive or negative situations, but it always describes an unusual, possibly miraculous instance in which something that can’t normally be seen or touched assumes a bodily form. For example, the Christian religion was founded on the belief that Jesus was God incarnate.

Definitions of incarnate
  1. adjective
    possessing or existing in bodily form
    “an incarnate spirit”
    synonyms: bodied, corporal, corporate, embodied
    corporeal, material
    having material or physical form or substance
  2. adjective
    invested with a bodily form especially of a human body
    “a monarch...regarded as a god incarnate
    having a body or a body of a specified kind; often used in combination
Definitions of incarnate
  1. verb
    represent in bodily form
    synonyms: body forth, embody, substantiate
    see moresee less
    type of:
    have the quality of being; (copula, used with an adjective or a predicate noun)
  2. verb
    make concrete and real
    see moresee less
    make immaterial; remove the real essence of
    type of:
    actualise, actualize, realise, realize, substantiate
    make real or concrete; give reality or substance to
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