tr.v. vin·di·cat·ed, vin·di·cat·ing, vin·di·cates
1. To clear of accusation, blame, suspicion, or doubt with supporting arguments or proof: "Our society permits people to sue for libel so that they may vindicate their reputations" (Irving R. Kaufman).
2. To defend, maintain, or insist on the recognition of (one's rights, for example).
3. To demonstrate or prove the value or validity of; justify: The results of the experiment vindicated her optimism.
4. Obsolete To exact revenge for; avenge.
[Latin vindicāre, vindicāt-, from vindex, vindic-, surety, avenger; see deik- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
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.