flocculate

verb

floc·​cu·​late ˈflä-kyə-ˌlāt How to pronounce flocculate (audio)
flocculated; flocculating

transitive verb

: to cause to aggregate into a flocculent mass
flocculate clay particles

intransitive verb

: to become flocculent
flocculant noun
flocculation noun
flocculator noun

Did you know?

In the late 16th century, scientists noticed that the loose masses separated from a solution or suspension through precipitation often resembled tufts of wool, and they began to refer to them as flocks, using a word for "tufts" that comes ultimately from the synonymous Latin word floccus. (This flock is not related to the flock that refers to a group of animals, which comes from Old English flocc, meaning "crowd" or "band.") About two centuries later, the Late Latin term flocculus found its way into English and was also used with the meaning "a small loosely aggregated mass." By the end of the 19th century, a whole word family had been formed, including the adjective flocculent, the noun floccule, and the verb flocculate.

Word History

First Known Use

1877, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of flocculate was in 1877

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Dictionary Entries Near flocculate

Cite this Entry

“Flocculate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/flocculate. Accessed 22 Apr. 2024.

Medical Definition

flocculate

1 of 2 verb
floc·​cu·​late ˈfläk-yə-ˌlāt How to pronounce flocculate (audio)
flocculated; flocculating

transitive verb

: to cause to aggregate into a flocculent mass
denature and flocculate cell proteins
flocculation noun

flocculate

2 of 2 noun
floc·​cu·​late -lət How to pronounce flocculate (audio) -ˌlāt How to pronounce flocculate (audio)
: something that has flocculated
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