de·file 1 (dĭ-fīl)
tr.v. de·filed, de·fil·ing, de·files
1. To make filthy or dirty; pollute: defile a river with sewage.
2. To debase the pureness or excellence of; corrupt: a country landscape that was defiled by urban sprawl.
3. To profane or sully (a reputation, for example).
4. To make unclean or unfit for ceremonial use; desecrate: defile a temple.
5. To have sexual intercourse with (a woman who is a virgin).
[Middle English defilen, alteration (influenced by filen, to befoul, from Old English fȳlan; see p- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots) of defoulen, to trample on, abuse, pollute, from Old French defouler, to trample, full cloth : de-, de- + fouler, to trample, beat down; see FULL2.]
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Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.