cu·​mu·​late | \ ˈkyü-myə-ˌlāt How to pronounce cumulate (audio) \
cumulated; cumulating

Definition of cumulate

transitive verb

1 : to gather or pile in a heap
2 : to combine into one
3 : to build up by addition of new material

intransitive verb

: to become massed

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Other Words from cumulate

cumulate \ ˈkyü-​myə-​lət How to pronounce cumulate (audio) , -​ˌlāt How to pronounce cumulate (audio) \ adjective
cumulation \ ˌkyü-​myə-​ˈlā-​shən How to pronounce cumulation (audio) \ 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.

Examples of cumulate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The two women met by chance in 2017 and their partnership has cumulated into these three political pieces. Marina Liao, Marie Claire, "A Denim Brand Is Laser-Etching #MeToo News Stories on its Jeans," 14 June 2018

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

First Known Use of cumulate

1534, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for cumulate

Latin cumulatus, past participle of cumulare, from cumulus mass

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Time Traveler for cumulate

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The first known use of cumulate was in 1534

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Cite this Entry

“Cumulate.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 23 January 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on cumulate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cumulate Encyclopedia article about cumulate

Comments on cumulate

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out of the ordinary or unreasonable

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