pre·​fab·​ri·​cate (ˌ)prē-ˈfa-bri-ˌkāt How to pronounce prefabricate (audio)
prefabricated; prefabricating; prefabricates

transitive verb

: to fabricate the parts of at a factory so that construction consists mainly of assembling and uniting standardized parts
: to produce artificially
prefabrication noun

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Now the market is being flooded by what Mr. Wisnefski calls shadow inventory as businesses that are normally big buyers, such as home builders and companies that prefabricate the trusses that hold up roofs and floors, sell from their own stockpiles. Ryan Dezember, WSJ, 15 June 2021 Some parts could be prefabricated in a factory, shipped to a job site and then installed with fewer workers, the company said. Matthew Haag, New York Times, 28 Apr. 2020 Built in 1969, the plastic prefabricated home offers a glimpse into the optimism of its time, when space was a new, exciting frontier and people believed that new technologies could solve the world's problems. Anna Bahney, CNN, 29 Nov. 2019 The playhouse is prefabricated offsite and can be delivered fully built or in flat-packed pieces to be constructed on-site. Liz Stinson, Curbed, 18 June 2019 Like pop idols hoisted for worship, these pastors aspire toward casual majesty and achieve prefabricated fabulousness. Troy Patterson, The New Yorker, 14 June 2019 The treehouse in question was prefabricated in Germany before being sent to the Swiss town of Halden, near Lake Constance, for its new residents. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, 4 June 2019 This restaurant in Dong Hoi, Vietnam, is built entirely from bamboo parts that were prefabricated then assembled on site. Liz Stinson, Curbed, 13 Sep. 2018 David Gilbert purchased a 1930s early Modernist prefabricated home for $74,000 in the working-class Prestonia neighborhood of Louisville, Ky., in 2010 with plans to rehab the investment property and sell it for a profit. Alina Dizik, WSJ, 30 Aug. 2018 See More

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

Word History

First Known Use

1932, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of prefabricate was in 1932

Dictionary Entries Near prefabricate

Cite this Entry

“Prefabricate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 9 Dec. 2022.

Kids Definition


pre·​fab·​ri·​cate (ˈ)prē-ˈfab-ri-ˌkāt How to pronounce prefabricate (audio)
: to manufacture the parts of something beforehand so that it can be built by putting the parts together
prefabrication noun

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