circulate

verb
cir·​cu·​late | \ ˈsər-kyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce circulate (audio) \
circulated; circulating

Definition of circulate

intransitive verb

1 : to move in a circle, circuit, or orbit especially : to follow a course that returns to the starting point blood circulates through the body
2 : to pass from person to person or place to place: such as
a : to flow without obstruction
b : to become well-known or widespread rumors circulated through the town
c : to go from group to group at a social gathering
d : to come into the hands of readers specifically : to become sold or distributed

transitive verb

: to cause to circulate

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Other Words from circulate

circulatable \ ˈsər-​kyə-​ˌlā-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce circulatable (audio) \ adjective
circulative \ ˈsər-​kyə-​ˌlā-​tiv How to pronounce circulative (audio) \ adjective
circulator \ ˈsər-​kyə-​ˌlā-​tər How to pronounce circulator (audio) \ noun

Examples of circulate in a Sentence

Blood circulates through the body. Steam circulates in the pipes. A pump circulates the water through the filter. Rumors are circulating around town. The report circulated among the students. Stories were circulated about mismanagement. He is circulating a petition asking for a new election. She circulated among her guests.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Earlier this week, a fresh batch of phallus photos circulated on Twitter—this time coming from the clouds above Luke Air Force Base in Arizona. Andrew Daniels, Popular Mechanics, "Now F-35s Are Getting in the Sky Dong Game," 30 May 2019 As flutes of Champagne circulated on silver trays, guests moved under molded ceilings, stood on grand staircases, and glimpsed into the gilded mirrors. Ian Malone, Vogue, "Jeff Koons and Monica Lewinsky Attend a Book Party Honoring Accidental Presidents at Ralph Lauren," 3 Apr. 2019 The adage circulating on the island is that Martha’s Vineyard is for millionaires and Nantucket is for billionaires. Hannah Seligson, Town & Country, "Inside Hotel Pippa, the Buzziest New Place to Stay on Nantucket," 1 Aug. 2018 The Indian government is mulling a response to the rumors circulating on WhatsApp, which has some 200 million monthly users in India, making the country the app’s largest market, according to the Washington Post. Eli Meixler, Time, "Five Killed in Latest Mob Attack After Rumors on Social Media. Here’s What to Know About India's WhatsApp Murders," 3 July 2018 McElhenney wrote, according to screenshots of the post circulated on Twitter. Patricia Madej, Philly.com, "Will Mindy Kaling be on the next season of 'It's Always Sunny'?," 21 June 2018 Namako said the discussion of recent suicide coverage that circulated on social media was productive. NBC News, "News coverage of high-profile suicides sparks debate about journalism ethics," 9 June 2018 Estrogen: Some experts believe that higher levels of circulating estrogen may play a role in increasing libido. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "10 Questions You’ve Always Wondered About Your Libido," 15 May 2019 The state has presented one of the most comprehensively anti-choice bills currently circulating, the omnibus bill. Cady Drell, Marie Claire, "With Alabama's Abortion Ban, Things Are Looking Bad for the Future of Roe v. Wade," 15 May 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'circulate.' 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 circulate

1603, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for circulate

Latin circulatus, past participle of circulare, from circulus

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Statistics for circulate

Last Updated

6 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for circulate

The first known use of circulate was in 1603

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More Definitions for circulate

circulate

verb
cir·​cu·​late | \ ˈsər-kyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce circulate (audio) \
circulated; circulating

Kids Definition of circulate

1 : to move around in a course Blood circulates in the body.
2 : to pass or be passed from place to place or from person to person The rumor circulated around the school.

circulate

intransitive verb
cir·​cu·​late | \ ˈsər-kyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce circulate (audio) \
circulated; circulating

Medical Definition of circulate

: to flow or be propelled naturally through a closed system of channels (as blood vessels) blood circulates through the body

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Comments on circulate

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