verb (used with object), sub·li·mat·ed, sub·li·mat·ing.

  1. Psychology. to divert the energy of (a sexual or other biological impulse) from its immediate goal to one of a more acceptable social, moral, or aesthetic nature or use.
  2. Chemistry.
    1. to sublime (a solid substance); extract by this process.
    2. to refine or purify (a substance).
  3. to make nobler or purer: To read about great men sublimates ambition.

verb (used without object), sub·li·mat·ed, sub·li·mat·ing.

  1. to become sublimated; undergo sublimation.


  1. Chemistry. the crystals, deposit, or material obtained when a substance is sublimated.


  1. purified or exalted; sublimated.


  1. psychol to direct the energy of (a primitive impulse, esp a sexual one) into activities that are considered to be socially more acceptable
  2. (tr) to make purer; refine


  1. chem the material obtained when a substance is sublimed


  1. exalted or purified

1560s, from Latin sublimatus, past participle of sublimare (see sublimation). Related: Sublimated; sublimating.


  1. To transform directly from the solid to the gaseous state or from the gaseous to the solid state without becoming a liquid.
  2. To modify the natural expression of an instinctual impulse, especially a sexual one, in a socially acceptable manner.

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