fes·​ter·​ing | \ ˈfe-st(ə-)riŋ How to pronounce festering (audio) \

Definition of festering

1 : contaminated by an infective agent (such as a bacterium) and producing pus a festering wound But if the patient can manage it, the whirlpool is a dandy way to handle festering bedsores.— Paul G. Donohue
2a : persisting and growing increasingly bitter over time festering resentment … comedy that comes from a pit of festering hatred …— Robert Brustein
b : persistently producing bad or unhealthy effects Four hundred yards to the west, between the schoolhouse and the mountain, lay a festering center of sin, a bootleg whiskey still operated by the celebrated anti-Prohibition guerilla Sam Reever.— Russell Baker

First Known Use of festering

1576, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of festering was in 1576

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Cite this Entry

“Festering.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/festering. Accessed 20 Apr. 2021.

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