Definition of cumulate
1 : to gather or pile in a heap
2 : to combine into one
3 : to build up by addition of new material
: to become massed
cumulateplay \-lət, -ˌlāt\ adjective
cumulationplay \ˌkyü-myə-ˈlā-shən\ noun
Did You Know?
Cumulate and its far more common relative "accumulate" both come from the Latin word cumulare, meaning "to heap up." "Cumulare," in turn, comes from cumulus, meaning "mass." ("Cumulus" functions as an English word in its own right as well. It can mean "heap" or "accumulation," or it can refer to a kind of dense puffy cloud with a flat base and rounded outlines.) "Cumulate" and "accumulate" overlap in meaning, but you're likely to find "cumulate" mostly in technical contexts. The word's related adjective, "cumulative," however, is used more widely.
Origin and Etymology of cumulate
Latin cumulatus, past participle of cumulare, from cumulus mass
First Known Use: 1534
Learn More about cumulate
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about cumulate
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up cumulate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).