ob·​late | \ ä-ˈblāt How to pronounce oblate (audio) , ˈä-ˌblāt How to pronounce oblate (audio) \

Definition of oblate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: flattened or depressed at the poles an oblate spheroid


ob·​late | \ ˈä-ˌblāt How to pronounce oblate (audio) \

Definition of oblate (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a layman living in a monastery under a modified rule and without vows
2 : a member of one of several Roman Catholic communities of men or women

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Other Words from oblate


oblateness noun

Examples of oblate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Because the Earth rotates, that shape gets compressed at the poles and bulges in the middle, forming a shape known as an oblate spheroid. Ethan Siegel, Forbes, "Ask Ethan: What Is A Scalar Field?," 19 Mar. 2021 Still, those oblate derrieres acknowledge that the flat stovetops of our Western kitchens make a rounded cooking vessel difficult to use. James P. Dewan, chicagotribune.com, "What you need to know before you wok," 16 Feb. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun But Earth is an oblate spheroid, meaning a 3D shape created by an ellipsis that’s rotating around its shorter axis—like a more rounded jelly donut. Caroline Delbert, Popular Mechanics, "Sad: This Isotope Lives for Just 8 Minutes and Leaves Behind a Wobbly Nucleus," 12 Feb. 2020 This was unexpected at Jupiter—a heavy, fast rotating, oblate (flattened at the poles) planet. Andrew Coates, Newsweek, "NASA Juno Unlocks Secrets of Jupiter's Mega Cyclone Clusters," 8 Mar. 2018

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


1705, in the meaning defined above


1693, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for oblate


borrowed from New Latin oblātus, from ob- ob- + -lātus (in prōlātus prolate)


probably borrowed from French oblat, going back to Middle French, "layperson living in a religious community after bequeathing it property," borrowed from Medieval Latin oblātus "person (as a child) given over to a monastery," derivative of oblātus, adjective, "given over (to a religious community)," going back to Latin, suppletive past participle of offerre "to put in a person's path, provide, offer entry 1" — more at tolerate

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Last Updated

29 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Oblate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/oblate. Accessed 7 May. 2021.

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