fat·​ten | \ ˈfa-tᵊn How to pronounce fatten (audio) \
fattened; fattening\ ˈfat-​niŋ How to pronounce fatten (audio) , ˈfa-​tə-​niŋ \

Definition of fatten

transitive verb

1a : to make fat, fleshy, or plump especially : to feed (an animal) for slaughter
b : to make more substantial
2 : to make fertile

intransitive verb

: to become fat

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Other Words from fatten

fattener \ ˈfat-​nər How to pronounce fatten (audio) , ˈfa-​tə-​nər \ noun

Examples of fatten in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Polar bears typically fatten up over the winter when the ice in their natural habitat enables them to more easily stalk seals and other pray on the water shoreline. jsonline.com, "11 animal personalities you have to meet at the Milwaukee County Zoo," 23 Dec. 2020 Grizzlies raid squirrel caches of whitebark pine cones and devour the seeds within the cones to fatten up for winter. Matthew Brown, Star Tribune, "US: mountain pine tree that feeds grizzlies is threatened," 1 Dec. 2020 Just before and following hibernation, the foundation provides the marmots—which can lose one-third of their weight during their winter snooze—with supplemental vegetation biscuits to fatten them up and improve reproduction rates. Rochelle Baker, Wired, "Endangered Vancouver Island Marmots Are Making a Comeback," 28 Nov. 2020 Instead, the team concludes these differences exist because fall-run salmon are measured months after the spring salmon, giving them more time to fatten up in the ocean. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "Salmon study sheds light on why fall-run fish are bigger than their spring-run cousins," 29 Oct. 2020 Some of your creative ideas and imaginative solutions can pay off and fatten your bank account. Tribune Content Agency, oregonlive, "Horoscope for Oct. 22, 2020: Happy birthday Jesse Tyler Ferguson; Leo, mixed signals confuse," 22 Oct. 2020 Every summer, when millions of salmon migrate upstream from the sea, brown bears gather along the region’s rivers in larger numbers than anywhere else on earth to fish and fatten up. Acacia Johnson, National Geographic, "For this family, keeping Alaska wild and pristine is a decades-long mission," 25 Sep. 2020 That includes McRaney, a Hollywood conservative who sees not so fine a line between people of genuine faith and people who use it merely as a tool to fatten their bank accounts. Mike Scott, NOLA.com, "For ‘Filthy Rich’ creator Tate Taylor, choosing a setting for his series was a no-brainer," 17 Sep. 2020 By early August, bears fatten up for winter, consuming 12,000 to 20,000 calories a day. Staff Reports Star Tribune, Star Tribune, "Minnesota briefs: Red Lake Nation receives virus recovery money," 5 Sep. 2020

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

circa 1552, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

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Time Traveler for fatten

Time Traveler

The first known use of fatten was circa 1552

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Statistics for fatten

Last Updated

8 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Fatten.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/fatten. Accessed 24 Feb. 2021.

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More Definitions for fatten



English Language Learners Definition of fatten

: to make (someone or something) fat
: to become fat


fat·​ten | \ ˈfa-tᵊn How to pronounce fatten (audio) \
fattened; fattening

Kids Definition of fatten

: to make or become fat

More from Merriam-Webster on fatten

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for fatten

Nglish: Translation of fatten for Spanish Speakers

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