tr.v. re·ha·bil·i·tat·ed, re·ha·bil·i·tat·ing, re·ha·bil·i·tates
1. To restore to good health or useful life, as through therapy and education: rehabilitate a patient; rehabilitate a prison inmate.
2. To restore to good condition: rehabilitate a storefront; rehabilitate the economy.
3. To cause to be regarded again in a positive way; reestablish esteem for: rehabilitate a reputation; rehabilitate a forgotten poet.
4. To restore the former rank, privileges, or rights of: Under the new regime, party members who had been sent to prison were rehabilitated.
[Medieval Latin rehabilitāre, rehabilitāt-, to restore to a former rank : Latin re-, re- + Late Latin habilitāre, to enable; see HABILITATE.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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.