Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To empty or remove the contents of.
  • transitive v. To create a vacuum in.
  • transitive v. To excrete or discharge waste matter from (the bowel, for example).
  • transitive v. To relinquish military possession or occupation of (a town, for example).
  • transitive v. To withdraw or send away (troops or inhabitants) from a threatened area.
  • transitive v. To withdraw or depart from; vacate.
  • intransitive v. To withdraw from or vacate a place or area, especially as a protective measure.
  • intransitive v. To excrete waste matter from the body.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To leave or withdraw from; to quit; to retire from; as, soldiers from a country, city, or fortress.
  • v. To make empty; to empty out; to remove the contents of, including to create a vacuum; as, to evacuate a vessel or dish.
  • v. To remove; to eject; to void; to discharge, as the contents of a vessel, or of the bowels.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To make empty; to empty out; to remove the contents of.
  • transitive v. Fig.: To make empty; to deprive.
  • transitive v. To remove; to eject; to void; to discharge, as the contents of a vessel, or of the bowels.
  • transitive v. To withdraw from; to quit; to retire from; as, soldiers from a country, city, or fortress.
  • transitive v. To make void; to nullify; to vacate.
  • intransitive v. To let blood.
  • intransitive v. to expel stool from the bowels; to defecate.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To make empty; cause to be emptied; free from anything contained: as, to evacuate a vessel; to evacuate the stomach by an emetic.
  • Hence To leave empty; vacate; depart from; quit: as, the enemy evacuated the place.
  • To make void or empty of something essential; deprive; strip.
  • To make void; nullify; make of no effect; vacate: as, to evacuate a marriage or a contract.
  • To void; discharge; eject: as, to evacuate excrementitious matter.
  • To produce an evacuation, as by letting blood.

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

  • v. move out of an unsafe location into safety
  • v. move people from their homes or country
  • v. create a vacuum in (a bulb, flask, reaction vessel)
  • v. excrete or discharge from the body
  • v. empty completely

Etymologies

Middle English evacuaten, from Latin ēvacuāre, ēvacuāt-, to empty out : ē-, ex-, ex- + vacuus, empty (from vacāre, to be empty).
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin evacuare. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • With them were four family members of those who died in the terrorist attacks, including Maggie Lemagne, whose brother David was a police officer killed while helping people evacuate from the burning towers.

    Campaigns call 9/11 cease-fire

  • Have you been wondering why so many people refuse to evacuate from the coast when a hurricane such as Rita or Katrina is approaching?

    September 2005

  • The excuse that the 200,000 people were too poor to evacuate is nonsense too.

    Should New Orleans be rebuilt? « BuzzMachine

  • That would help me establish that Governor Blanco had 3 days to help Mayor Nagin evacuate all those poor dead souls that are floating in New Orleans today, as the Hurricane Evacuation Plan promised that they would do.

    Stop the cover-up now « BuzzMachine

  • If our call to evacuate is “successful” and 80% respond, what will happen?

    Deals with devils « BuzzMachine

  • One is a, when we bring people to shelters, or we open shelters or evacuate from the areas, the coastal areas, we have our metro buses that pick people up at predetermined points that are marked.

    Needless exaggeration « BuzzMachine

  • And don†™ t forget the the number of those who also Didn†™ t evacuate from the rest of the decimated Gulf Coast region.

    More than a tragedy — a scandal « BuzzMachine

  • Jack’s response to an order to evacuate is disbelief: “I’m not just a college professor,” he whines.

    Class Conflict

  • Thousands of people were forced to evacuate from the towns of Chaiten and Futaleufu in Chile earlier this week after the volcano’s first eruption in 9,000 years blew a thick column of ash eastward for hundreds of miles over Patagonia and Argentina to the Atlantic Ocean.

    Archive 2008-05-01

  • “And what happened to the people that did evacuate is that they got into massive traffic jams and many of them spent the worst part of the hurricane either on the highway— stopped— or had pulled off to the side of the road,” remembers Suhayda.

    Think Progress » Chertoff Learned of Levee Failure 36 Hours After Mayor Nagin?

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