Also found in: Thesaurus, Idioms.
v. dis·crim·i·nat·ed, dis·crim·i·nat·ing, dis·crim·i·nates
1. To make a clear distinction; distinguish: discriminate among the options available.
2. To make distinctions on the basis of class or category without regard to individual merit, especially to show prejudice on the basis of ethnicity, gender, or a similar social factor: was accused of discriminating against women; discriminated in favor of his cronies.
1. To perceive or notice the distinguishing features of; recognize as distinct: unable to discriminate colors.
2. To make or constitute a distinction in or between: methods that discriminate science from pseudoscience; characteristics that discriminate early stone artifacts from pieces of natural stone.
[Latin discrīmināre, discrīmināt-, from discrīmen, discrīmin-, distinction; see krei- in Indo-European roots.]
dis·crim′i·nate (-nĭt) adj.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.