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infect (v.)

late 14c., "fill with disease, render pestilential; pollute, contaminate; to corrupt morally," from Latin infectus, past participle of inficere "to stain, tinge, dye," also "to corrupt, stain, spoil," literally "to put in to, dip into," from in- "in" (from PIE root *en "in") + facere "to make, do, perform" (from PIE root *dhe- "to set, put"). In Middle English occasionally in a neutral sense "tinge, darken," but typically used of things indifferent or bad, and especially of disease. Related: Infected; infecting.

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Definitions of infect from WordNet

infect (v.)
communicate a disease to;
Your children have infected you with this head cold
infect (v.)
contaminate with a disease or microorganism;
Synonyms: taint
infect (v.)
corrupt with ideas or an ideology;
society was infected by racism
infect (v.)
affect in a contagious way;
His laughter infects everyone who is in the same room
From wordnet.princeton.edu