ca·​ter | \ ˈkā-tər \
catered; catering; caters

Definition of cater

intransitive verb

1 : to provide a supply of food cater for a large party
2 : to supply what is required or desired catering to middle-class tastes

transitive verb

: to provide food and service for catered the banquet

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Other Words from cater

caterer \ ˈkā-​tər-​ər \ noun

Synonyms for cater


board, feed, provision, victual

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Examples of cater in a Sentence

The restaurant caters for parties. A local restaurant catered the banquet. The awards ceremony will be a catered event.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Verizon will also launch a new service plan next week that’ll cater to first responders and will feature unlimited data with no caps on mobile solutions. Ashley Carman, The Verge, "Verizon says it will stop throttling emergency responders’ data speeds," 24 Aug. 2018 Grand opening The Vista Chamber of Commerce invites chamber members and the public to a grand opening for Tastefully Yours catering company at 2:15 p.m. Thursday at 2381 La Mirada. Laura Groch,, "North County Business Briefs, July 12," 12 July 2018 In addition, Asiana hasn’t been able to serve meals on some of its planes since Sunday after switching catering suppliers. Eun-young Jeong, WSJ, "South Korean Airlines Face Operational and Familial Headwinds," 6 July 2018 The two biggest chambers of commerce here are conspicuously split on whether a local catering firm should be feeding children in a tent city in Tornillo that sprang up as a result of the Trump administration’s separation of families at the border. Brian Chasnoff, San Antonio Express-News, "Chambers split on RK Group subcontract," 2 July 2018 Helmed by Michelle Mulford, the Brookline boutique catering company specializes in intimate home gatherings., "Let Uncommon Feasts do the cooking," 11 June 2018 And her purple and gold lightning bolts cater to that theory, as that's a mix of Barry's speedster color and Iris' temporary speedster color. Sydney Bucksbaum, The Hollywood Reporter, "DC TV Watch: 'Gotham' Reveals New Joker's Surprising Demeanor," 5 May 2018 The bill would fund 25 percent of the government (the remaining 75 percent has already been passed) until February 8, when Trump will have to contend with a new House Democratic majority less likely to cater to his whims. Emily Stewart, Vox, "“Shutdown today”: Trump is going all in for the border wall," 21 Dec. 2018 These companies sell, use or analyze the data to cater to advertisers, retail outlets and even hedge funds seeking insights into consumer behavior. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Facebook’s role in the French protests has polarized observers," 11 Dec. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cater.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cater

1580, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for cater

obsolete cater buyer of provisions, from Middle English catour, short for acatour, from Anglo-French, from acater to buy — more at cate

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Statistics for cater

Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cater

The first known use of cater was in 1580

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English Language Learners Definition of cater

: to provide food and drinks at a party, meeting, etc., especially as a job


ca·​ter | \ ˈkā-tər \
catered; catering

Kids Definition of cater

1 : to provide a supply of food cater for parties
2 : to supply what is needed or wanted

Other Words from cater

caterer noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on cater

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cater

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cater

Spanish Central: Translation of cater

Nglish: Translation of cater for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cater for Arabic Speakers

Comments on cater

What made you want to look up cater? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to settle judicially or to act as judge

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