\ ˈvat How to pronounce vat (audio) \

Definition of vat

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1 : a large vessel (such as a cistern, tub, or barrel) especially for holding liquors in an immature state or preparations for dyeing or tanning
2 : a liquor containing a dye converted into a soluble reduced colorless or weakly colored form that on textile material steeped in the liquor and exposed to the air is converted by oxidation to the original insoluble dye and precipitated in the fiber


vatted; vatting

Definition of vat (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to put into or treat in a vat

Definition of VAT (Entry 3 of 3)

value-added tax

Examples of vat in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

The fact that the secondary bubble-producing fermentation occurs in a vat instead of individual bottles makes the process, and thus the resulting wine, less expensive; making prosecco a winner for mixing mimosas, but less nuanced to sip solo. Lauren Hubbard, Town & Country, "Prosecco Isn't the Champagne of Italy, Franciacorta Is," 15 Mar. 2019 Keep a vat of it next to your bed, have a tube in your purse, keep samples in every drawer in your apartment. Gigi Engle, Glamour, "4 Reasons You’re Bleeding After Sex," 4 Apr. 2019 To measure the ideal conditions for life to form, the researchers filled a vat with hydrogen cyanide and hydrogen sulphite. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "Kickstarting Life on an Exoplanet Requires the Right Amount of UV Light," 1 Aug. 2018 Laundresses tread clothing in vats of urine, the only thing strong enough to shift bloodstains. Sam Sacks, WSJ, "Fiction: From Great War to Trojan War," 6 Sep. 2018 The startup, called Malta, uses separate vats of molten salt and antifreeze-like liquid to store electricity as thermal energy and dispatch it to the grid when it's needed. Megan Geuss, Ars Technica, "Using molten salt to store electricity isn’t just for solar thermal plants," 24 Dec. 2018 Arriving guests are handed a beer that is brewed right next to the check-in, in enormous stainless steel fermenting vats. Jessica Flint, WSJ, "The Seattle Hotel Playbook," 3 Dec. 2018 The milk comes into the vat at 6.7 pH, but will likely hit about 5.3 pH by the end of the process. Tim Newcomb, Popular Mechanics, "Connected to the Craft," 3 Dec. 2018 Hawaii Blue’s dye vats are only big enough to fit one square yard of fabric. Ariella Gintzler, Outside Online, "How OluKai Makes Its Hand-Dyed Indigo Kicks," 30 May 2018

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


12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1784, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for vat


Middle English vet, vat, southern variant of fat, fet, going back to Old English fæt, going back to Germanic *fata- (whence Old Saxon fat "vessel," Old High German faz); akin to Lithuanian púodas "pot"

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Dictionary Entries near vat






vat dye


Statistics for vat

Last Updated

10 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for vat

The first known use of vat was in the 12th century

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More Definitions for vat

Financial Definition of VAT

What It Is

A value added tax (VAT) is a consumption tax added to a product's sales price. It represents a tax on the "value added" to the product throughout its production process.

How It Works

The VAT system is invoice-based. Each seller in the product chain includes a VAT charge on the buyer's invoice. Under a VAT taxation system, all sellers collect the tax and then pay it to the government. The VAT gives sellers along the supply chain a direct economic motivation to collect the tax, thereby reducing the incidence of tax evasion.

Don't confuse the VAT with sales tax. Under a sales tax, the tax is collected only once at the consumer's point of purchase. The VAT tax, however, is collected every time a business purchases products from other businesses within the product's supply chain.

Why It Matters

The VAT is a highly efficient flat consumption tax that reduces the incidence of non-compliance. More than 100 countries have adopted it -- with rates ranging from 10% - 25%.

Investors who are looking for safer overseas investments should consider whether the prospective country uses a VAT, which indicates a more stable fiscal environment.

Source: Investing Answers



English Language Learners Definition of vat

: a large container (such as a tub or barrel) used especially for holding liquids


\ ˈvat How to pronounce vat (audio) \

Kids Definition of vat

: a large container (as a tub) especially for holding liquids in manufacturing processes

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\ ˌvē-ˌā-ˈtē\

Legal Definition of VAT

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More from Merriam-Webster on vat

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with vat

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for vat

Spanish Central: Translation of vat

Nglish: Translation of vat for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vat for Arabic Speakers

Comments on vat

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