What does prostrate mean?

Definitions for prostrate
ˈprɒs treɪtpros·trate

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word prostrate.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. flat, prostrateadjective

    stretched out and lying at full length along the ground

    "found himself lying flat on the floor"

  2. prone, prostrateverb

    lying face downward

  3. prostrate, bow downverb

    get into a prostrate position, as in submission

  4. prostrateverb

    render helpless or defenseless

    "They prostrated the enemy"

  5. prostrateverb

    throw down flat, as on the ground

    "She prostrated herself with frustration"


  1. prostrateverb

    (Often reflexive) To lie flat or facedown; to throw oneself down in submission (also figuratively).

  2. prostrateverb

    To cause to lie down, to flatten; (figuratively) to overcome or overpower.

  3. prostrateadjective

    Lying flat, facedown.

  4. prostrateadjective

    Emotionally devastated.

    I told him you was prostrate with grief. Mammy to Scarlett, Gone With the Wind.

  5. prostrateadjective

    Physically incapacitated from environmental exposure or debilitating disease.

    He was prostrate from the extreme heat.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. PROSTRATEadjective

    Etymology: prostratus, Lat.

    Once I saw with dread oppressed
    Her whom I dread; so that with prostrate lying,
    Her length the earth in love’s chief cloathing dressed. Philip Sidney.

    He heard the western lords would undermine
    His city’s wall, and lay his tow’rs prostrate. Edward Fairfax.

    Before fair Britomart she fell prostrate. Edmund Spenser.

    Groveling and prostrate on yon lake of fire. John Milton.

    Look gracious on thy prostrate thrall. William Shakespeare.

    The warning sound was no sooner heard, but the churches were filled, the pavements covered with bodies prostrate, and washed with tears of devout joy. Richard Hooker.

    Let us to the place
    Repairing where he judg’d us, prostrate fall
    Before him reverent; and there confess
    Humbly our faults, and pardon beg. John Milton.

    While prostrate here in humble grief I lie,
    Kind virtuous drops just gath’ring in my eye. Alexander Pope.

  2. To Prostrateverb

    Etymology: prostratus, Lat.

    In the streets many they slew, and fired divers places, prostrating two parishes almost entirely. John Hayward.

    A storm that all things doth prostrate,
    Finding a tree alone all comfortless,
    Beats on it strongly, it to ruinate. Edmund Spenser.

    Stake and bind up your weakest plants against the winds, before they come too fiercely, and in a moment prostrate a whole year’s labour. John Evelyn, Kalendar.

    The drops falling thicker, faster, and with greater force, beating down the fruit from the trees, prostrating and laying corn growing in the fields. John Woodward, Nat. Hist.

    Some have prostrated themselves an hundred times in the day, and as often in the night. Brian Duppa.


  1. prostrate

    Prostrate means lying down on the ground in a prone position facing downward in an act of submission or reverence, either figuratively or literally. It can also refer to being physically or emotionally weakened to the point of being unable to function. In botany, prostrate refers to a plant or its parts growing flat against the ground.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Prostrateadjective

    lying at length, or with the body extended on the ground or other surface; stretched out; as, to sleep prostrate

  2. Prostrateadjective

    lying at mercy, as a supplicant

  3. Prostrateadjective

    lying in a humble, lowly, or suppliant posture

  4. Prostrateadjective

    trailing on the ground; procumbent

  5. Prostrateverb

    to lay fiat; to throw down; to level; to fell; as, to prostrate the body; to prostrate trees or plants

  6. Prostrateverb

    to overthrow; to demolish; to destroy; to deprive of efficiency; to ruin; as, to prostrate a village; to prostrate a government; to prostrate law or justice

  7. Prostrateverb

    to throw down, or cause to fall in humility or adoration; to cause to bow in humble reverence; used reflexively; as, he prostrated himself

  8. Prostrateverb

    to cause to sink totally; to deprive of strength; to reduce; as, a person prostrated by fever

  9. Etymology: [L. prostratus, p. p. of prosternere to prostrate; pro before, forward + sternere to spread out, throw down. See Stratum.]

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Prostrate

    pros′trāt, adj. thrown forwards on the ground: lying at length: lying at mercy: bent in adoration.—v.t. to throw forwards on the ground: to lay flat: to overthrow: to sink totally: to bow in humble reverence.—n. Prostrā′tion, act of throwing down or laying flat: act of falling down in adoration: dejection: complete loss of strength. [L. pro, forwards, sternĕre, stratum, to strew.]

Matched Categories

How to pronounce prostrate?

How to say prostrate in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of prostrate in Chaldean Numerology is: 9

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of prostrate in Pythagorean Numerology is: 6

Examples of prostrate in a Sentence

  1. Bharavi:

    As drops of bitter medicine, though minute, may have a salutary force, so words, though few and painful, uttered seasonably, may rouse the prostrate energies of those who meet misfortune with despondency.

  2. John Calvin:

    It is said that this idol provoked to jealousy, because the Jews by erecting this idol trod under foot their God, or at least endeavored to prostrate his glory.”

  3. Donald McEachin:

    So the question becomes, 'Why is this young man prostrate on a Charlottesville sidewalk beaten like a dog?'.

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Translations for prostrate

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"prostrate." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 23 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/prostrate>.

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    difficult or impossible to perceive or discern
    • A. contagious
    • B. aculeate
    • C. indiscernible
    • D. eminent

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