foment was our Word of the Day on 12/16/2011. Hear the podcast!
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Examples of foment in a Sentence
He was accused of fomenting violence.
John Adams's wife, Abigail, told him that if women were not remembered by the new American government, they would “foment a Rebellion and will not hold ourselves bound by any Laws in which we have no voice or Representation”.
Recent Examples of foment from the Web
Planning for the possibility of a fierce storm began long before Harvey started fomenting in the Caribbean.
As GOP strategist Alex Conant pointed out, by breaking all this news now, Trump also risks fomenting outrage by giving even the appearance of hiding this underneath a hurricane.
America's legislators, governors and mayors of all stripes must constantly be on guard to counter those who foment domestic racial terrorism or violence.
A pair of terror attacks in Spain has reminded the world of the threat that fomenting extremist ideologies pose at home and abroad.
The alt-right organized their weekend activities and fomented anger and hate inside their online homes, Reddit and 4Chan.
A military confrontation could start with a U.S. effort to force regime change, either by taking out the Kim regime or by fomenting a rebellion among elites in the isolated dictatorship.
Square footage prices years ago got scary in New York City, helping to foment an exodus of talented young chefs.
The military government in Thailand, another American ally, has bought submarines from China and, at China’s request, deported Uighurs, a Turkic ethnic group that China accuses of fomenting violence in China.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'foment.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
If you had sore muscles in the 1600s, your doctor might have advised you to foment the injury, perhaps with heated lotions or warm wax. Does this sound like an odd prescription? Not if you know that "foment" traces to the Latin verb fovēre, which means "to heat." The earliest documented English uses of "foment" appear in medical texts offering advice on how to soothe various aches and pains by the application of moist heat. But the idea of applying heat can also be a metaphor for stimulating or rousing to action. Within 50 years of its English debut, "foment" was also being used in political contexts to mean "to stir up," "to call to action," or, in a sense at least figuratively opposite to its original one, "to irritate."
Origin and Etymology of foment
First Known Use: circa 1613See Words from the same year
Synonymsabet, brew, ferment, incite, instigate, pick, provoke, raise, stir (up), whip (up)
Related Wordsadvance, cultivate, encourage, forward, foster, further, nourish, nurture, promote, sow, stimulate; detonate, set, set off, trigger; excite, galvanize, inflame (also enflame), inspire, motivate, rouse; activate, energize, enliven, fire, invigorate, jazz (up), liven (up), pep (up), quicken, stimulate, vitalize
Near Antonymsbridle, check, constrain, curb, discourage, hold, inhibit, regulate, rein (in), restrain, tame; allay, calm, quiet, settle, soothe, still, subdue, tranquilize (also tranquillize)
Synonym Discussion of foment
- inciting a riot
- instigated a conspiracy
- aiding and abetting the enemy
- fomenting rebellion
FOMENT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of foment for English Language Learners
: to cause or try to cause the growth or development of (something bad or harmful)
medical Definition of foment
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