palliate

palliate, extenuate, gloze, gloss, whitewash, whiten are comparable when they mean to give a speciously fine appearance to what is base, evil, or erroneous.
Palliate may stress the concealing or cloaking or the condoning of the enormity of a crime or offense
{

retracing thus his frolics ('tis a name that palliates deeds of folly and of shame)— Cowper

}
{

we have not endeavored to conceal or even palliate his errors— Lockhart

}
{

we cannot . . . explain away this deliberate act as due to the garrulity of age, or accept the other excuses with which his admirers have sought to palliate it— L. P. Smith

}
The word also is used especially in reference to other than moral evils in the sense of to disguise the true nature or extent of so as to soften the bad effects
{

minds which are keener and wills which are stronger than the average do not rest in "quiet desperation" palliated by illusion— Krutch

}
{

resort to coercive force and suppression of civil liberties are readily palliated . . . when the cry is raised that "law and order" are threatened— Dewey

}
Extenuate (see also THIN) implies the aim to lessen (as by excuses or explanations) the seriousness or magnitude of some crime, offense, or guilt
{

when you shall these unlucky deeds relate, speak of me as I am; nothing extenuate, nor set down aught in malice— Shak.

}
{

he did not extenuate, he rather emphasized, the criminality of Catiline and his confederates— Froude

}
But the term is often used in the sense of to make excuses for
{

had never forgiven Cromwell the execution of the martyr Charles; and to extenuate the conduct of the great Roundhead captain, was to make Mrs. Doria despise and detest you— Meredith

}
{

he permits himself. . . costly Havana cigars and an electric typewriter. There are circumstances that extenuate both indulgences— Kahny

}
Gloze and gloss often followed by over, imply an aim to veil by more or less light dissembling (as by specious comments or by flattering talk) the true harshness, un-pleasantness, or disagreeableness of something; often, the words suggest a representation of what is actually disagreeable as more or less agreeable or as not distinctly unpleasant; gloze, however, is usually more derogatory than gloss which is a relatively neutral word
{

the explorer has succeeded in glossing over the hardships he endured

}
{

not wish to gloss over the fragmentary state of our present knowledge— Eddingtori

}
{

with the tongue of flattery glozing deeds which God and Truth condemn— Whittier

}
{

we glozed our fraud by conducting their necessary war purely and cheaply— T. E. Lawrence

}
{

believed in youth and did not gloze the unpleasant consequences of age— MacNeice

}
Whitewash, and less often whiten, imply an attempt to cover up (as a crime, a defect or fault, or a person's guilt) by some such means as a superficial investigation, or a perfunctory trial, or a special report that leads to a seeming acquittal or exoneration or that gives the person or persons accused an appearance of innocence or blamelessness
{

a poet and an author will go as far in whitewashing a munificent tyrant— Walpole

}
{

by selecting the evidence any society may be relatively blackened, and any other society relatively whitenedSpencer

}
{

his object in attempting to whitewash the evildoers was not so clear— Crofts

}
Analogous words: mitigate, alleviate, lighten (see RELIEVE): condone, *excuse: *moderate, qualify, temper: cloak, mask, *disguise, dissemble, camouflage

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Palliate — Pal li*ate, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Palliated}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Palliating}.] 1. To cover with a mantle or cloak; to cover up; to hide. [Obs.] [1913 Webster] Being palliated with a pilgrim s coat. Sir T. Herbert. [1913 Webster] 2. To cover with… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Palliate — Pal li*ate, a. [L. palliatus, fr. pallium a cloak. See {Pall} the garment.] 1. Covered with a mantle; cloaked; hidden; disguised. [Obs.] Bp. Hall. [1913 Webster] 2. Eased; mitigated; alleviated. [Obs.] Bp. Fell. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • palliate — I (abate) verb allay, alleviate, appease, arrest, assuage, attemper, bate, bound, bring to a standstill, cease, check, circumscribe, curb, curtail, deactivate, decelerate, decrease, desist, diminish, discontinue, ease, eliminate, lenify, lessen,… …   Law dictionary

  • palliate — (v.) to alleviate without curing, 1540s, from M.L. palliatus, lit. cloaked, from pp. of L.L. palliare cover with a cloak, conceal, from L. pallium cloak (see PALL (Cf. pall) (n.)). Related: Palliated; palliating …   Etymology dictionary

  • palliate — [v] gloss over; cover up abate, allay, alleviate, apologize for, assuage, camouflage, cloak, conceal, condone, cover, diminish, disguise, dissemble, ease, exculpate, excuse, extenuate, gloze, hide, hush up*, justify, lessen, lighten, make light… …   New thesaurus

  • palliate — ► VERB 1) make (the symptoms of a disease) less severe without removing the cause. 2) make (something bad) less severe. DERIVATIVES palliation noun. ORIGIN Latin palliare to cloak …   English terms dictionary

  • palliate — [pal′ē āt΄] vt. palliated, palliating [< pp. of LL palliare, to conceal, cloak, back form. < L palliatus, cloaked < pallium, a cloak] 1. to lessen the pain or severity of without actually curing; alleviate; ease 2. to make appear less… …   English World dictionary

  • Palliate — To palliate a disease is to treat it partially and insofar as possible but not cure it completely. Palliation cloaks a disease. Palliate has several senses, including: to reduce the severity of (a disease); to moderate the intensity of something; …   Medical dictionary

  • palliate — verb /ˈpalɪeɪt,ˈpæl.i.eɪt/ a) To relieve the symptoms of; to ameliorate. And if there are some bankers out there who are still embarrassed by the size of their bonuses, then I propose that they palliate their guilt by giving to the Mayors Fund… …   Wiktionary

  • palliate — UK [ˈpælɪeɪt] / US [ˈpælɪˌeɪt] verb [transitive] Word forms palliate : present tense I/you/we/they palliate he/she/it palliates present participle palliating past tense palliated past participle palliated 1) formal to make something bad seem less …   English dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.