n. pl. trav·es·ties
1. A debased or grotesque likeness: elections that were a travesty of democracy.
2. An exaggerated or grotesque imitation, such as a parody of a literary work.
tr.v. trav·es·tied, trav·es·ty·ing, trav·es·ties
To make a travesty of; parody or ridicule.
[From obsolete, disguised, burlesqued, from French travesti, past participle of travestir, to disguise, parody, from Italian travestire : Latin trāns-, trans- + Latin vestīre, to dress (from vestis, garment; see wes-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots).]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 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.