lubricate

verb
lu·​bri·​cate | \ ˈlü-brə-ˌkāt \
lubricated; lubricating

Definition of lubricate

transitive verb

1 : to make smooth or slippery
2 : to apply a lubricant to

intransitive verb

: to act as a lubricant

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Other Words from lubricate

lubrication \ ˌlü-​brə-​ˈkā-​shən \ noun
lubricative \ ˈlü-​brə-​ˌkā-​tiv \ adjective
lubricator \ ˈlü-​brə-​ˌkā-​tər \ noun

Synonyms for lubricate

Synonyms

grease, oil, slick, wax

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Examples of lubricate in a Sentence

it's not a good idea to use olive oil to lubricate the gears in an appliance

Recent Examples on the Web

Your eyelids help keep your eyes lubricated in a few important ways. Sarah Jacoby, SELF, "Are Eyelid Issues Causing Your Dry Eyes? Here's How to Tell," 14 Dec. 2018 Or the melting lubricates more melting, and so forth. David Roberts, Vox, "Climate change policy can be overwhelming. Here’s a guide to the policies that work.," 30 Nov. 2018 Oktoberfest, the second-most-important tourist magnet for the Bavarian-themed mountain town of Leavenworth, this year drew less of the loud, lager-lubricated partying for which it was once known. Paul Roberts, The Seattle Times, "Peak Oktober: Has Leavenworth’s famously beery festival reached its limit?," 26 Oct. 2018 Dry eye happens when your eyes can’t adequately lubricate themselves because the amount or quality of your tears isn’t up to par, according to the National Eye Institute (NEI). Korin Miller, SELF, "8 Possible Reasons Your Contacts Feel So Scratchy," 8 Aug. 2018 Dry eye occurs when the quantity and/or quality of your tears isn’t high enough to keep your eyes lubricated. Juno Demelo, Glamour, "4 Times Vision Loss Is About More Than Your Eyes Getting Older," 13 Nov. 2018 Such exchanges lubricate the wheels of our culture, our economy and our society. Bob Brody, WSJ, "If I Wanted a TV Dinner, I’d Stay Home," 20 Sep. 2018 Weird but true: Dogs lower intestinal tract glands produce a clear, jelly-like slime to lubricate the colon and help stool pass more easily. Marygrace Taylor, Good Housekeeping, "6 Things Your Dog's Poop Can Tell You About Its Health," 11 July 2018 To reach the prostate, lubricate a finger and gently put it up the man's rectum. Redbook, "33 Sexy Places to Touch Your Guy," 30 Oct. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lubricate.' 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 lubricate

circa 1623, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for lubricate

Latin lubricatus, past participle of lubricare, from lubricus slippery — more at sleeve

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Statistics for lubricate

Last Updated

23 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for lubricate

The first known use of lubricate was circa 1623

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More Definitions for lubricate

lubricate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of lubricate

: to make (something) smooth or slippery : to apply a lubricant to (something, such as a machine or a part of a machine)

lubricate

verb
lu·​bri·​cate | \ ˈlü-brə-ˌkāt \
lubricated; lubricating

Kids Definition of lubricate

: to apply oil or grease to in order to make smooth or slippery Mechanics lubricated the gears.

lubricate

transitive verb
lu·​bri·​cate | \ ˈlü-bri-ˌkāt \
lubricated; lubricating

Medical Definition of lubricate

: to make smooth, slippery, or oily in motion, action, or appearance lubricate the eye lubricate the skin

Other Words from lubricate

lubrication \ ˌlü-​brə-​ˈkā-​shən \ noun

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Comments on lubricate

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