Mutilate is a verb that means to injure or ruin, usually in a brutal or messy way. If you drop a cantaloupe into a wood chipper, you'll mutilate that poor melon, with chunks of fruit and rind flying everywhere.

Mutilate can also mean altering an object so it's unrecognizable. Once you mutilate something, it'll no longer resemble its original form. Celebrities who get too much plastic surgery are said to mutilate their faces, because they no longer look like themselves. Mutilate can also describe causing a disfiguring injury. Monsters and evil villains in horror movies tend to mutilate their victims instead of neatly murdering them.

Definitions of mutilate
  1. verb
    destroy or injure severely
    “The madman mutilates art work”
    synonyms: cut up, mangle
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    type of:
    inflict damage upon
  2. verb
    destroy or injure severely
    mutilated bodies”
    synonyms: mar
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    force out, gouge
    force with the thumb
    type of:
    injure or wound seriously and leave permanent disfiguration or mutilation
  3. verb
    alter so as to make unrecognizable
    synonyms: mangle, murder
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    type of:
    distort, falsify, garble, warp
    make false by mutilation or addition; as of a message or story
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