Etymology
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cannibalize (v.)

1798 (in Burke's memoirs), figurative, and meaning "be perverted into cannibalism," from cannibal + -ize. Meaning "take parts from one construction and use them in another" is from 1943, originally of military equipment. Related: Cannibalized; cannibalizing.

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Definitions of cannibalize

cannibalize (v.)
eat human flesh;
Synonyms: cannibalise
cannibalize (v.)
use parts of something to repair something else;
Synonyms: cannibalise
From wordnet.princeton.edu