Etymology
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vindicate (v.)

1620s, "to avenge or revenge," from Latin vindicatus, past participle of vindicare "to stake a claim; to liberate; to act as avenger" (see vindication). Meaning "to clear from censure or doubt, by means of demonstration" is recorded from 1630s. Related: Vindicated, vindicating.

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Definitions of vindicate

vindicate (v.)
show to be right by providing justification or proof;
vindicate a claim
Synonyms: justify
vindicate (v.)
maintain, uphold, or defend;
vindicate the rights of the citizens
vindicate (v.)
clear of accusation, blame, suspicion, or doubt with supporting proof;
You must vindicate yourself and fight this libel
From wordnet.princeton.edu