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foment

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verb fo·ment \ˈfō-ˌment, fō-ˈ\

Simple Definition of foment

  • : to cause or try to cause the growth or development of (something bad or harmful)

Full Definition of foment

  1. transitive verb
  2. :  to promote the growth or development of :  rouse, incite <foment a rebellion>

fo·ment·er noun

Examples of foment

  1. He was accused of fomenting violence.

  2. <John Adams's wife, Abigail, told him that if women were not remembered by the new American government, they would foment a Rebellion and will not hold ourselves bound by any Laws in which we have no voice or Representation.>



Origin of foment

Middle English, to apply a warm substance to, from Late Latin fomentare, from Latin fomentum compress, from fovēre to heat, soothe; akin to Lithuanian degti to burn, Sanskrit dahati it burns


First Known Use: circa 1613

Synonym Discussion of foment

incite, instigate, abet, foment mean to spur to action. incite stresses a stirring up and urging on, and may or may not imply initiating <inciting a riot>. instigate definitely implies responsibility for initiating another's action and often connotes underhandedness or evil intention <instigated a conspiracy>. abet implies both assisting and encouraging <aiding and abetting the enemy>. foment implies persistence in goading <fomenting rebellion>.


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