plural noun

Pe·​na·​tes pə-ˈnā-tēz How to pronounce Penates (audio) -ˈnä- How to pronounce Penates (audio)
: the Roman gods of the household worshipped in close connection with Vesta and with the Lares

Word History


Latin, from penus food, provisions

First Known Use

circa 1522, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of Penates was circa 1522

Dictionary Entries Near Penates

Cite this Entry

“Penates.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jun. 2024.

More from Merriam-Webster on Penates

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!