Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To rise or cause to rise into the air and float in apparent defiance of gravity.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To cause to rise in the air and float, as if in defiance of gravity.
  • v. Be suspended in the air, as if in defiance of gravity.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To rise, or tend to rise, as if lighter than the surrounding medium; to become buoyant; -- opposed to gravitate.
  • transitive v. To make buoyant; to cause to float in the air.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To cause to become buoyant in the atmosphere; make light, so as to cause to float in the air; deprive of normal gravity.
  • To act or move by force of levity—that is, by a repulsive force, contrary to gravity; overcome the force of gravity by means of specific lightness: especially, in recent use, said of a body heavier than the air, but supposed to rise in it by spiritual means.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. be suspended in the air, as if in defiance of gravity
  • v. cause to rise in the air and float, as if in defiance of gravity

Etymologies

From Latin levis, light (on the model of gravitate); see levity.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)

Examples

  • The word levitate has appeared in 19 New York Times articles in the past year, including on Sept. 16 in Taking on the Börse, Abbie

    NYT > Home Page

  • Tells me he thinks I can develop the ability to levitate, which is something I've always totally wanted to do.

    Archive 2006-08-01

  • Alan's Marshall Suite vs Levitate comparison: shake off is as good as ol gang as the standout track marshall is as good as inch as the big techno noise track bound is as good as masquerade antidotes is as good as inch anecdotes is as good as hurricane edward birthday song is way better than I come and stand inevitable is way better than levitate, which is shite mad eng is way better than tragic days foldin 'money's about as good as mummy as a cover on my own is about the same as everybody but mesel' touch sensitive's about as good as ten houses in fact, the two albums mirror each other quite well but maybe you're right and doc shanley swings it in lev's direction ..... not to mention the 'bonus' disc - levitate's third movement

    The Fall - victorious

  • The Collective sent representatives to the famous protest to "levitate" the Pentagon in mid-October, and provided free food for the occasional large public gathering.

    Manhood in the Age of Aquarius: Masculinity in Two Countercultural Communities, 1965–83

  • I think there are much nicer ways to 'levitate' a laptop than this.

    The Suspended Laptop | Lifehacker Australia

  • His card tricks are freaky cool, but watching him "levitate" is really incredible to watch (see Kungfukitten's comment on this post for how it's done - I was too lazy to research it).

    haloaskew Diary Entry

  • But he had accomplished no more when, as related, in the autumn of the same year the brothers Montgolfier conceived the notion of making bodies "levitate" by the simpler expedient of filling them with smoke.

    The Dominion of the Air; the story of aerial navigation

  • After all, while some boomers were trying to "levitate" the Pentagon to protest the Vietnam War, other boomers were fighting in that war.

    NYT > Home Page

  • I kind of levitate toward the piano stuff as I explore.

    Home Theater Forum

  • Since elevators and other animations are not implemented there is a "levitate" feature so that you can move vertically to areas only accessible via elevators and ladders.

    The Code Project Latest Articles

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