1. Belonging to a lower or inferior class or rank; secondary.
2. Subject to the authority or control of another.
One that is subordinate.
tr.v. (sə-bôrdn-āt′) sub·or·di·nat·ed, sub·or·di·nat·ing, sub·or·di·nates
1. To put in a lower or inferior rank or class.
2. To make subservient; subdue.
[Middle English subordinat, from Medieval Latin subōrdinātus, past participle of subōrdināre, to put in a lower rank : Latin sub-, sub- + Latin ōrdināre, to set in order (from ōrdō, ōrdin-, order; see ar- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots).]
sub·ordi·nate·ness, sub·or′di·nation (-nāshən) n.
sub·ordi·na′tive (-nə′tĭv) adj.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. 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.