fruc·​ti·​fy ˈfrək-tə-ˌfī How to pronounce fructify (audio)
fructified; fructifying

intransitive verb

: to bear fruit
its seeds shall fructifyAmy Lowell
no partnership can fructify without candor on both sidesD. M. Ogilvy

transitive verb

: to make fruitful or productive

Did you know?

Fructify comes from Latin fructus, meaning “fruit.” When the word was first used in English, it literally referred to the actions of fruit-bearing plants. Later it was used to refer to the action of making something literally or figuratively fruitful, such as soil or labor, respectively. These days fructify is more frequently used to refer to the giving forth of something in profit from something else (such as dividends from an investment). Fructus also gave us the name of the sugar fructose, as well as usufruct, which refers to the legal right to enjoy the fruits or profits of something that belongs to someone else.

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web However, investors’ money can grow and fructify over time, making the value of their building increase. Florian Monkam, Forbes, 5 Oct. 2022 These negotiations, which have surged and ebbed over the last half-decade, are not likely to fructify soon. Samanth Subramanian, Quartz, 17 Mar. 2022 Reliance has been in talks with Saudi Aramco for a stake sale in its refinery unit, although the transaction is yet to fructify. Matthew Martin,, 5 Nov. 2020

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'fructify.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Middle English fructifien, from Anglo-French fructefier, from Latin fructificare, from fructus fruit

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of fructify was in the 14th century


Dictionary Entries Near fructify

Cite this Entry

“Fructify.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Mar. 2023.

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