im·​preg·​nate | \ im-ˈpreg-ˌnāt How to pronounce impregnate (audio) , ˈim-ˌpreg- \
impregnated; impregnating

Definition of impregnate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : to cause to be filled, imbued, permeated, or saturated impregnate wood with varnish
b : to permeate thoroughly
2 : to make pregnant : fertilize


im·​preg·​nate | \ im-ˈpreg-nət How to pronounce impregnate (audio) \

Definition of impregnate (Entry 2 of 2)

: being filled or saturated

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Other Words from impregnate


impregnation \ (ˌ)im-​ˌpreg-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce impregnate (audio) \ noun
impregnator \ im-​ˈpreg-​ˌnā-​tər How to pronounce impregnate (audio) , ˈim-​ˌpreg-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for impregnate

Synonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Verb

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soak, saturate, drench, steep, impregnate mean to permeate or be permeated with a liquid. soak implies usually prolonged immersion as for softening or cleansing. soak the garment in soapy water saturate implies a resulting effect of complete absorption until no more liquid can be held. a saturated sponge drench implies a thorough wetting by something that pours down or is poured. clothes drenched by a cloudburst steep suggests either the extraction of an essence (as of tea leaves) by the liquid or the imparting of a quality (such as a color) to the thing immersed. steep the tea for five minutes impregnate implies a thorough interpenetration of one thing by another. a cake strongly impregnated with brandy

Examples of impregnate in a Sentence

Verb a cake impregnated with brandy impregnated the cloth with furniture polish
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Working with her husband, who was also a chemist, Ms. Free figured out how to impregnate strips of filter paper with chemicals that turned blue when glucose was present. New York Times, 3 May 2021 House Bill 64, from state Rep. Jena Powell of Darke County, seeks to crack down on cases where a fertility doctor uses his own sperm to impregnate a patient without her knowledge. Jeremy Pelzer, cleveland, 8 Feb. 2021 Quincy Fortier, who practiced gynecology and obstetrics in Las Vegas for decades and used his own sperm to impregnate an untold number of women without their knowledge or consent. John Anderson, WSJ, 1 Dec. 2020 The original plan had been to use donor sperm to impregnate Candice. Molly Longman,, 15 June 2020 Famous long story short: David pursues an adulterous relationship with Bathsheba and impregnates her. Arthur C. Brooks, The Atlantic, 7 May 2020 Scott disappeared after agreeing to plead guilty to raping and impregnating his 14-year-old stepdaughter. Fox News, 1 Feb. 2020 Though Cooper and Irina Shayk are together and have a child, plenty of fans have declared themselves impregnated by this duet; watching it again (and again) seems like the only natural thing to do. Michelle Ruiz, Vogue, 25 Feb. 2019 The trial for the former Hacienda nurse accused of raping and impregnating an incapacitated patient under his care has been pushed back as his attorney prepares to propose a possible plea agreement. Bree Burkitt, azcentral, 18 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The genetic material was thus less effective for artificial insemination procedures to impregnate female dogs. Kristin Lam, USA TODAY, 28 Jan. 2020

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

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First Known Use of impregnate


1605, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1646, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for impregnate


Late Latin impraegnatus, past participle of impraegnare, from Latin in- + praegnas pregnant

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Time Traveler for impregnate

Time Traveler

The first known use of impregnate was in 1605

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Statistics for impregnate

Last Updated

9 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Impregnate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for impregnate



English Language Learners Definition of impregnate

: to cause (a material) to be filled or soaked with something
technical : to make (a woman or a female animal) pregnant


transitive verb
im·​preg·​nate | \ im-ˈpreg-ˌnāt, ˈim-ˌ How to pronounce impregnate (audio) \
impregnated; impregnating

Medical Definition of impregnate

1a : to make pregnant
b : to introduce sperm into : fertilize
2 : to cause to be filled, imbued, permeated, or saturated gauze impregnated with white petrolatum

Other Words from impregnate

impregnation \ (ˌ)im-​ˌpreg-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce impregnate (audio) \ noun


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