Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

civilize

verb
     
civ‧i‧lize also civilise British English [transitive]
1 to influence someone's behaviour, making or teaching them to act in a more sensible or gentle way:
Andrea was a great civilizing influence on her husband.
2 to improve a society so that it is more organized and developed, and often more fair or comfortable:
Ellis was credited with civilizing the Texas prison system.

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