1520s, in the grammatical sense, "inflect (a verb) through all its various forms," from Latin coniugatus, past participle of coniugare "to yoke together," from assimilated form of com "with, together" (see con-) + iugare "to join," from iugum "yoke" (from PIE root *yeug- "to join"). "This use has its origin in the fact that in inflected languages, a verb is conjugated by conjoining certain inflectional syllables with the root" [Century Dictionary]. Earlier as an adjective, "joined together" (late 15c.). Related: Conjugated; conjugating.
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