gravitate

verb grav·i·tate \ ˈgra-və-ˌtāt \
Updated on: 16 Nov 2017

Definition of gravitate

gravitated; gravitating
intransitive verb
1 : to move under the influence of gravitation
2 a : to move toward something
b : to be drawn or attracted especially by natural inclination
  • youngsters … gravitate toward a strong leader
  • —Rose Friedman

gravitate was our Word of the Day on 01/23/2016. Hear the podcast!

Examples of gravitate in a Sentence

  1. The guests gravitated toward the far side of the room.

  2. The conversation gravitated to politics.

  3. Voters have started gravitating to him as a possible candidate.

  4. Many young people now gravitate toward careers in the computer industry.

Recent Examples of gravitate from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gravitate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Did You Know?

English has several weighty words descended from the Latin gravitas, meaning "weight." The first to arrive on the scene was "gravity," which appeared in the early 16th century. (Originally meaning "dignity or sobriety of bearing," it quickly came to mean "weight" as well.) Next came "gravitation" (used to describe the force of gravity) and "gravitate" - both mid-17th century arrivals. "Gravitate" once meant "to apply weight or pressure," but that use is now obsolete. In the late 17th century, it was recorded in the sense "to move under the effect of gravitation." It then acquired a more general sense of "to move toward something" (as toward a specific location), and finally a metaphorical third sense of "to be attracted" (as toward a person or a vocation).

First Known Use of gravitate

1692


GRAVITATE Defined for English Language Learners

gravitate

verb

Definition of gravitate for English Language Learners

  • : to move or tend to move to or toward someone or something

  • : to be attracted to or toward something or someone


GRAVITATE Defined for Kids

gravitate

verb grav·i·tate \ ˈgra-və-ˌtāt \

Definition of gravitate for Students

gravitated; gravitating
: to move or be drawn toward something

Medical Dictionary

gravitate

intransitive verb grav·i·tate \ ˈgrav-ə-ˌtāt \

medical Definition of gravitate

gravitated; gravitating
: to move under the influence of gravitation


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up gravitate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

sticky or viscid

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Find the Cousins

  • a-large-tree-with-many-branches
  • Which pair shares a common word ancestor?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!