pullulate

verb pul·lu·late \ ˈpəl-yə-ˌlāt \

Definition of pullulate

pullulated; pullulating
intransitive verb
b :to breed or produce freely
  • the country's pullulating population
2 :swarm, teem
  • the island pullulated with tourists

pullulation

play \ˌpəl-yə-ˈlā-shən\ noun

pullulate was our Word of the Day on 03/28/2010. Hear the podcast!

Examples of pullulate in a Sentence

  1. a tough city neighborhood that has a reputation for pullulating with prostitutes and petty criminals

Did You Know?

To remember the history of "pullulate," think chickens. This may sound like odd advice, but it makes sense if you know that "pullulate" traces ultimately to the Latin noun pullus, which means not only "sprout," but also "young of an animal" and, specifically, "chick." "Pullus" is also an ancestor of "pullet" ("young hen"), "poult" (meaning "young fowl" and especially "young turkey"), and even "poultry" ("domesticated fowl"). At first "pullulate" referred to sprouting, budding, and breeding around the farm; only later did it gain its "swarm" sense.

Origin and Etymology of pullulate

Latin pullulatus, past participle of pullulare, from pullulus, diminutive of pullus chicken, sprout — more at foal

pullulate Synonyms

Synonyms
brim, bristle, bulge, burst, bustle, buzz, crawl, hum, overflow, abound, swarm, teem
Near Antonyms
lack, need, want

Medical Dictionary

pullulate

intransitive verb pul·lu·late \ ˈpəl-yə-ˌlāt \

medical Definition of pullulate

pullulated; pullulating
1 :to bud or sprout
2 :to breed or produce freely

pullulation

play \ˌpəl-yə-ˈlā-shən\ noun


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